By Silvana Kroni
Every cloud and all that. Even COVID.
It wasn’t until I had to self isolate (possibly with COVID, we don’t know as it was too early on to get tests at the time) that I threw myself into GirlKindCommunity (also known as GKC).
I started the account sometime last November but wasn’t very consistent at the time. After all, it had started out as a hobby. Something to focus on every so often. But then C-word happened. Then the F-word happened in March (furlough) and this is when things changed. From March to May I posted every single day. Sometimes even two or three times. I even started a series on feed called ‘Good News Awaits’ where I sourced positive and wholesome news stories from around the world. The first few months of lockdown were really not easy for me. For a lot of people. Every turn felt draining and negative. The world was panicking and scared and I wanted to find a shred of light among all the darkness.
All the Good News Awaits posts are of course still there. For a while it was the main thing that people messaged me about. It really did fill my heart with happiness to know these positive news posts were helping people. Even on the days I was feeling low myself I wanted to continue posting and sourcing these stories for the people along that dm’d me their gratitude.
Where did GirlKindCommunity come from?
I remember scrolling through my Instagram feed, half paying attention, just out to habit as I often did. I was struck by how ‘perfect’ and posed all the content was that I was seeing. Influencers and friends alike.
Don‘t get me wrong, I’ve absolutely fallen into that ‘Instagram girl aesthetic’ before. Or I tried to at least. With my personal account, slowly I have tried to learn that perfection truly does not exist for anyone. My goal is to show my genuine self a lot more in my posts. Whether it’s makeup, no makeup, serious or laughing my pea sized head off, it’s real sides of me and I’m proud of that. That Instagram is a lot of people’s best bits. So don’t compare your real life to anyone’s feed. It’s okay to post whatever you want. Posed or not. Just make sure above all, you take social media with a pinch of salt.
Girlkindcommunity has allowed me to even be a little brave in showing my real and raw moments. My moles, my scars, my stretchmarks and my bare face grace the GKC Instagram feed. I have been raw and real in the hopes it would smooth another woman’s mind out there.
Comparison is the biggest thief of joy
There are so so many beautiful women in this world. I mean, I knew this logically but wow. Instagram really lets you know. I’m talking stunning. Unreal. Right at my fingertips and right here is where comparison starts.
Instagram has given us such a large pool of lives to compare against. Back in the day you maybe compared yourself against the people in your school or town. You didn’t know what people in other continents were doing or what they were wearing or eating and so on. But now you do. You know all of that. More than you’ll really need to know.
The access we have is crazy. And it’s not these peoples fault. We cannot put blame of individuals. I don’t even want to blame instagram. We don’t know where this app will even be in a few years time? But I am determined to create a positive and healthy space while I have the chance.
What I did want to do is take back some of the power. And channel that in a different way. A more uplifting, positive way. I want people who follow GKC to take away something good from the account. This links closely with mental health, something I’m very passionate about. In recent years we have luckily started to openly talk more about mental health. There is so much I could say on this alone, it’s something very close to my heart and I truly feel for people that have been or are going through a difficult time. It’s not easy to escape. But it’s another reason I am so active on GKC. Though I am just one person I am determined to leave a positive mark in this world where there is so much negativity and sorrow. Even if my little account helps but a few people. That’s amazing to me.
Trying to take up space in a more positive and healthy way
I want people to post whatever they want. Whatever makes them feel happiest and most themselves. Whether that’s looking prim and perfect or looking more ‘real’. If you want to post your latte or your next door neighbours cat – do it. No shame. Don’t worry about the likes. You do you angel.
No one looks at your ‘flaws’ more than you. They just don’t. We have to live with ourselves forever. So instead of being “our worst critic” why don’t we try instead to be our very best friend.
Please please be yourself. If you don’t know who that person quite is yet, try to find out. Work hard on her (or him). Don’t waste years trying to be something you’re not. You will be so sad looking back on yourself, knowing you were not truly yourself. Or worse. That you spent years trying to be a copy of someone else.
A female-orientated community
The name kind of came to me when I was playing around with ideas. My goal was to have a strong sense of welcoming and ease for people that came across the account. I want people to be able to go on the GirlKindCommunity account and come off of it feeling better. In my personal experience I hadn’t seen many (if any) pages like GKC out there. That’s why I wanted to create my own and create it especially for women.
I have to say that this account is also heavily trying to take my own advice. I need nurturing and strength just as much as the next person. I am definitely not happy 24/7. But I am certainly trying to open my mind and be more aware of my thought and surroundings. I’m a big believer that you should control your space and treat it like it’s sacred. I’m trying and learning along the way too.
It is possible. There is hope. Take it from someone who would cry from how deep rooted their insecurities were. Now I just cry at… well a lot of things still. I’m a big soft touch. What can I say. But I am in a much much more accepting head space. And I accept my differences as unique things about me. Without sounding too much like a primary school teacher, we are all incredibly special in our own cool ways.
GKC has turned into a massive passion and I’m excited to see where it goes.
Silvana is the founder of GirlKindCommunity. She tries to use the platform to spread some goodness and break up the typical Instagram feed we have gotten so used to seeing. More than ever mental health is impacting people today and social media and body image has a big part to play in that. She is a normal girl trying to navigate my way through life and knows first hand how low and insecure you can be made to feel. She created GKC to also help and remind herself that not only is she fine as she is, but there’s so much more to her than looks. So much more to all of us. She has a multimedia journalism degree and worked in marketing for a little while so content creating comes pretty easily and is a passion of hers. She feels most free and at peace when being creative. GKC has turned into a massive passion and she is excited to see where it goes.