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social media

  • Bullying,, Health, Mental Health, Social, Technology

    Dealing with hurtful instagram comments

    online bullying

    First of all, knowing your worth and being confident in who you are as a person can help you combat the things that people comment on your posts. Being strong in who you are as a person is the first tool to beating those hateful comments. You may want to disable comments or delete your instagram for a while so that you can recharge and help your mind heal from instagram trolls. Sometimes a break can help you focus on you and do things that make you happy. Fill your mind with positive thoughts and dispose of negative things people comment or say about you. They are wrong.

    Hurt people hurt people

    Whatever mean comments people write behind the comfort of their phone screen is usually out of a place of insecurity and self-doubt. People that have the audacity to spread their mean opinions are usually hurting inside and are broken.

    Don’t fuel the fire

    I know the first thing that you want to do is comment back but don’t. Be the bigger person because the reason they comment those things is to receive a reaction out of you and to spark drama which could ultimately reflect your character if you engage in it. So ignore it because if you do then they don’t even know if you saw it.

    Ignore the comments

    Don’t even take one look at them. I challenge you to not even look at who likes your photos or who comments and see how your perspective on social media changes. Social media has become a competition for the best photos, the best life, and the most likes. Strip the competition away and have fun. Take photos of you laughing or eating an ice cream cone.

    Know your worth

    Realize that the things people say are meant to tear you down, but know that the things they say are lies. One person does not define who you are as a person and you should not let them have that power over your mind. Speak truth over who you are.

    Think about your happiness

    Post pictures because you want to share them with the world and because those pictures make you happy. Never approach social media for the likes or attention or for whatever you are lacking because it will leave you empty and always coming back for more.

    Behind those phone screens, we are all people with real emotions and real feelings. Never be afraid to show the world who you really are. People value that more than anything.

    Social media has changed the way we connect with people, but it can also make us feel lonely and less than. Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter all have so many pros but the one thing that rings true for all of them is that there can be awful and mean things said. Here are tips on what to do if you’re faced with them

  • Articles

    Six Tips on Selling Thrift Store Finds

    thrift stores

    By Chloë Bloodworth

    Most teenagers do not have a ton of money to spend at boutiques and malls as they wish. This is why thrift stores can be excellent places to find items of clothing for less than $20. If thrifting is something you are passionate about, why not make some money off of it? Especially if you hit the thrift stores regularly to purchase for yourself, selling those clothes you really admired but did not quite fit you can be a great way to make a little extra cash! Below are some rules and tips for selling your thrift store finds.

    1. Find a platform. You will need an audience of potential customers in order to sell the items you find, and social media can be a great way to achieve that! If you choose Instagram, you can sell through your personal account’s story or you can create an account purely for selling your items. Start by following some friends and check out other thrift flip accounts for inspiration. You can make a post for each item and add a description of the size, brand, cost, and more about the item in the caption. On Instagram, you may choose to host a giveaway (you must consider how much you are willing to spend on a giveaway item) in which you require your followers to tag a friend in the comment section in order to enter. This can be a great way to get more followers, as long as you follow through with your giveaway and select a winner. You can also sell items through the story of your personal Snapchat account. On Snapchat, you already have a set audience of friends, family, and mutuals who may be interested in what you are selling. Facebook marketplace can be an excellent place to sell your thrift finds because people go to this platform in order shop. Just be sure you are old enough and have your parents’ or guardians’ permission before creating an account.

    2. Set up your rules. If you do not have guidelines for your shop, selling your items can become chaotic and confusing. You must decide on how far from your location you are willing to sell, if you would prefer to sell from a designated location, how much shipping will cost (if you choose to ship), if you want to want to allow bidding (and if so, your rules on bids), if you allow returns, and any other factors that may occur to you as you set up your shop. Then make sure to list your rules so that your audience can see them, such as in your bio or on each post or slide of items you are trying to sell.

    3. Be careful when deciding on a price for an item. You do not want to undercharge: You should at least charge 3 or more dollars above the amount you spent on the item. Remember that part of the price is the time and effort you put into finding an item. You also do not want to overcharge. It is not fair to the customer for you to sell a clothing item that is not nearly worth what you are charging for it. To get a good estimate of what you should charge for an item, see if you can find the particular item or something similar online and see how much it costs. Also think about how much you got the item for and consider why this might be.

    4. Make sure your items are in good condition. Thrift items are typically second hand so it is natural for them to be not quite as perfect as they would be if they were sold brand new, but make sure they are free of stains or undesired rips that the customer would not appreciate.

    5. Do not be afraid to “flip” a thrift item. To flip an item means to add your own touch to or to fix up an item of clothing to make it more desirable. Some examples of flipping are to cut pants into shorts, paint designs onto shorts pockets, or cut long tee shirts into crop tops. You can also charge more for an item you have flipped because you have put time and work into improving it. Of course, flipping is not required- You can sell a perfectly good thrifted item as is.

    6. Have fun with it! If you do not enjoy thrifting or hate to let go of thrifted items, perhaps selling thrift store finds is not for you, and that is ok.

    Selling thrifted items can be very exciting and profitable if you enjoy thrift shopping and are smart with attracting customers and with your pricing. If you are interested, go have fun and make some extra cash!


    The Fatality of FOMO


    FOMO is Fatal

    Most likely, you have heard the term, FOMO.

    Honestly, you’ve probably been feeling this in some way or another your whole life, you just haven’t known what to call it.

    FOMO, or the “Fear of Missing Out,” is yet another problem that social media has exemplified, taking off the most recently.

    But what is FOMO?

    For me, FOMO is seeing Snapchats of my best friends at the premiere of a movie I wanted to see but had to pass on due to the looming fear of an upcoming test. As well as scrolling through Instagram. Jealousy skyrockets at the sight of people zip lining in Costa Rica or riding camels through the sands of Morocco.

    The ability to view other’s high points in life provides no opportunity for us to be genuinely happy for them. In fact, it has increased the amount of time we waste, remaining stagnant in a constant state of comparison.

    What we don’t see is the process. We see an aesthetically pleasing filter, a dazzling smile, and breathtaking surroundings. So why do we long to be somewhere we know absolutely nothing about?

    Truth is, we don’t.

    Seeing someone else in an ideal situation makes us feel like we should be doing more, traveling more, going out more, and hanging out with friends more.

    We’re not focused on experiencing these things for ourselves.

    We’re focused on not experiencing these things for ourselves. It’s not about what we’re gaining, but more about what we’re losing.

    So next time you’re experiencing FOMO, ask yourself– what will I really benefit from this? Will it make me smarter or happier? And will this have any significance on me in the long run? Do I actually want to do these things, or does it just look better than whatever I’m doing at the moment?

    FOMO is psychological torture.

    FOMO definitely isn’t an easy thing to forget about, but it’s certainly not something to dwell on.

    Learn to be comfortable with yourself, comforted by the idea that you’re on the correct path, making the correct decisions. If you know your priorities, you’ll know how to get there– not even FOMO will be able to blind you.

  • Articles

    Life Without Social Media– is it Possible?

    Wake up and turn alarm off. Roll over in bed. Grab phone and check Instagram. After scrolling through recent pictures, check Twitter. Becoming bored with the timeline, check Facebook. Finally, and only when everything has been seen, get up and get ready for the day.


    This is my typical morning routine, and if I had to guess, many others spend their mornings in a similar way. If nobody had fallen into these bad habits, we would have a lot of extra time in the morning: time to eat a good breakfast, work out and organize the day, all if we didn’t waste it on social media.


    If cutting social media out of mornings could drastically alter them, how else could daily life be affected?


    Would we stroll down the street, actually noticing the people and our surroundings? Would we devote our full attention in class, not constantly worrying about the text messages and notifications we’re missing? Would we make better, unforgettable memories, being entirely present in every moment?


    It’s easy to become wrapped up in a funny tweet, aesthetically pleasing Instagram picture or entertaining Facebook video, but how often do we take a step back and realize what we’re actually missing? Would our lives feel more complete by cutting social media out?


    There was a time where people didn’t have to worry about constantly refreshing their applications, and as our parents and grandparents say, it was a much simpler time. We’re too stuck in our ways to reverse them now, but surely there’s a way to climb out of the social media hole that we’ve dug ourselves in.


    I believe the main problem is treating our smartphones and other gadgets as a priority; we prioritize this technology over others and even ourselves, choosing to indulge in social media rather than activities that could advance our education, health or social lives.


    If we could divert our focus away from our phones and social media for a small amount each day, it’ll start to add up, resulting in better relationships and a fuller life– the type of life our parents said they grew up in, without phones.


  • Articles

    How to Avoid the Social Media Comparison Trap

    How to avoid social media comparison trap

    Scrolling through our Twitter timeline or Instagram dashboard has become second-nature to us, much like the air we breathe. It’s instinctual to take that quick glance down at your home screen while waiting to cross the street. It’s an everyday occurrence to open the Instagram app while waiting for class to start. It’s a part of our night-time routine to check each social media platform before we fall asleep, assuring we didn’t miss out on anything during the day.


    Although social media has brought our society so many great things, it has also left its users in a constant state of insecurity and comparison.


    “Why isn’t my relationship that perfect?”


    “Why doesn’t my skin look that good?”


    “Why do they get to travel the world while I’m stuck going to work or school?”


    Nobody has the answers on how to avoid self-doubt stemming from social media– I still battle with it constantly, so I won’t pretend like I have some anti-insecurity secret formula. What I can offer, however, is a collection of thoughts I run through whenever I’m not feeling as confident as I should.


    Always remember, the number of followers you have and the number of likes you receive doesn’t dictate your character. However silly it may seem, everyone feels a flicker of disappointment when a picture doesn’t reach a certain amount of likes. Everyone checks up on their number of followers, wondering why it has gone down. Don’t let that number define you. Internally, if you know you’re a good person, that’s all that matters.


    Remind yourself that social media, Instagram in particular, is someone’s highlight reel. It’s a collection of their happiest moments, the moments where they look and feel the best; nobody’s life is that put-together and aesthetically pleasing 100% of the time. You never know what is going on behind-the-scenes in someone’s life, so don’t become discouraged over a fabricated image someone is trying to emanate.


    Unfollow accounts that make you feel negative about yourself. Post for yourself, not because you think it’s what others want to see. Take a social media vacation and assess what aspects are toxic to your self-confidence.


    Above all, at the end of the day, realize that there’s only one you. It sounds cheesy, but it’s true. We’re all worth so much more than the snapshots of our life that we post on social media.


  • Bullying

    The Truth About Your Voice on Social Media

    Girlspring social media

    When I first started middle school, we passed notes on little pieces of paper until the paper was nothing more than a grey scale.

    It was our version of texting. It was tedious and involved a system of people willing to pass them back and forth for you. There was always the risk that someone you didn’t want to see or read it would, but it was a risk we were willing to take.

    I remember a girl in my sixth grade English class being made fun of in a series of notes. The class kept passing them back and forth for some hateful little girls without seeing the contents of what they were sharing. This went on for days, with the girls snickering in secret.

    Then my teacher caught wind of the notes passing and halted one of their letters before it reached the second reader of the day. I won’t repeat what was said, but just know that the girl who the note was about left the room in tears. The mean girls looked horrified. They didn’t think what they were saying was that big of a deal.

    They felt that there were no consequences for something that was written down versus spoken aloud. This would have been true if the teacher had never apprehended the letter. Or would it have been?

    Would it still be mean if the person you were writing about never knew you were writing hurtful things about them?

    This brings me to the topic of Social Media. As our technology grows, so do the opportunities for communication. What was once a simple note in the classroom is now a string of characters on someone’s Twitter feed.

    This gives more power to the speaker or texter. The words that are posted online are there for the public eye and will forever have a paper trail. With all chances to be good, there are equal amounts of chances to be bad. It is what balances the world, but it is something that does not have to support us. As a human race, we can choose to find other measures of entertainment and morals rather than basing them on being horrific to others.

    Unfortunately, there is a sort of confidence boost when we don’t have to see the consequences of our actions.

    Those girls from my sixth-grade class eventually apologized to the girl they hurt, and notes were banned from the classroom. But this did not stop people from sneaking more notes around. It did, however, change the mean girls’ opinions on what they put on paper.

    With social media, there is no immediate action. Even if a series of posts are written concerning something hateful, it could take days before an adult does something to handle it. And too often do we hear that we should ignore our bullies and let them get away with it simply because we are “the better person.” A better person would let them know that what they are doing is wrong.

    If they can use their platform to spit fire, then you can use yours to voice positivity.

    If someone is mean to you on social media, try responding to them once with a heartfelt comment on why what they are saying is problematic for you. Then, seek adult advice or council. You are not what those people say about you. You are what you make of yourself.

    It is okay to seek help from friends, family, or professionals when you are feeling uneasy about something. With so many paper receipts for posts today, there will always be evidence of how the other person hurt you. But in the end, it will affect when they try to get hired for a job. Or if someone is doing a character assessment?

    Try to blend the idea of ignoring your bullies and facing them together. Give them a single response at the start, then move on with your life. If they realize that you aren’t going to bite, they may just get bored. But at least you will have publicly announced how terrible they are behaving and have addressed the issue before moving on.

    If what people are saying about you online is getting deep beneath your skin, you are not alone.

    Everyone experiences self-doubt, insecurities, and sometimes depression. It is up to you how to handle it when you face it. I will provide some links below that can help guide you through some tough social media situations. Hopefully, some of them will be relatable and helpful if you’re in this situation: abuse/bullying-and-cyberbullying.htm


    Some key tips for dealing with social media drama, whether it is being bullied or unfairly treated:

    Remain professional or as adult-like as possible

    Give short answers when your words become too aggressive

    Remind yourself that this is public information and that future employers will likely have access to it

    Think of positive thoughts

  • Photography

    To Post or Not To Post, That Is the Question

    To Post or Not To Post, That Is the Question

    Social media is a huge part of most teens’ lives, specifically Instagram and Snapchat. It sounds great–sharing your life with your friends and family through pictures, videos, and limited characters. While that may seem innocent and unharmful, this is the ideal situation. Realistically, you open Snapchat or Instagram and see your friends all hanging out without you. You see a party that you weren’t invited to. Or you post a photo with all your good friends except the one who wasn’t invited. Even though looking at these social media sites can be helpful, informational, and just enjoyable, it only takes one picture to ruin your day. We can all admit that our feelings can get hurt on Instagram and/or Snapchat, so what are we going to do about it? Ignore other’s feelings? Not post anything out of fear of excluding someone? No. There must be a balance of awareness and good judgment.

    Before you post anything, put yourself in someone else’s shoes.
    Think about how you would feel if you saw this post or story, and how it would make you feel. Ask yourself these questions:

    1. Who are you (not) with?
    2. Is this something that needs to be posted?
    3. What are you saying in this post?

    Who are you (not) with?

    Who is with you at the moment? Who is in this picture or video? Before you post, pause and think about which people are included here. Is it your small group of friends? Is it a huge non-exclusive party, or is it just one other person? Stopping to think about the people in your post is important because it can give you the opportunity to see whose feelings will or will not be hurt. If it’s just one friend or your small group of friends, that’s usually not a big deal, whereas a bigger, exclusive group of people can be a bigger deal. It’s up to your discretion.

    Is this something that needs to be posted?

    After thinking about the people in or not in the post, you may want to consider if this post should even be posted. What is your reasoning behind posting this? It may be that you are celebrating a friend, or you had a great time at a retreat and want to share your experience. It could also be to bring someone down. If that’s the case, then you need to rethink your motives.

    Another thing to think about is that when you are with your friends and family, you should be with them in the moment. Yes, it’s nice to have pictures to look back on, but you don’t want the memories from those pictures to be of you on your phone the entire time; find the balance of being present and making sure to document fun, important moments. When you are about to post something, stop to think about why you are posting it, if it’s necessary to share, or if it can stay a memory for yourself and friends.

    What are you saying?

    Think about why you want to post this and what you’re saying by posting this. Whether it’s a selfie of yourself, some new gift you got, or a group pic of you and your friends, you are saying something when you post. It may be that you have a lot of friends, or that you have money to get all of the latest new clothes or technology. You may even be saying that you’re better than others. Whatever you are saying, whether you’re aware or unaware, you must be careful about what your post relays to everyone. Before you post, think about what it is you are saying in this post and why.

    Since we all have been hurt by others’ posts on Instagram, we should do something to stop the hurt instead of encourage it. There is a balance between awareness and good judgement. Before you hit the post button, remember to think about who is with and not with you, if this memory should be shared or kept to yourself and friends, and what message you are telling in the post.