A Penny For My Thoughts (How The Instagram Hashtag Slow Living Has Made Me Want To Write About Religious Women And Their Duplicity)

How The Instagram Hashtag Slow Living Has Made Me Want To Write About Religious Women And Their Duplicity

Steady on. 

In writing this entry, I may seem as touchy as a schoolgirl losing her looks; however, the truth is, I feel this blog post theme is compellingly beneficial. Because of my past experiences, I think there's an ever-increasing necessity to shed light on the invariable consequences of women leading the charge in this narrative. I've matured in ways this subject no longer strikes a disadvantageous chord, and I am also brilliant enough to know teaching from my scars and not my wounds will be most beneficial. This precise reason is why often, I will wait on writing about particular topics. There's nothing more Ill~bred than to write about a topic that's apparent one hasn't stitched their heart but bangs on about the subject in the throws of subjective distress. I am also self-aware to be transparent that I once did this often; however, I retain now an accumulated understanding of this notion that to better advance change, I must first be healed myself and then write.

Suppose you've spent any amount of time on Instagram (look away, non Instagrammers, look away! ) No, in all sincerity, this post has validity in all manner of living, not just for folk enjoying an Instagram account. I am fond of the old-fashioned ideas and cottage core aesthetic feel.

If you do not happen to fancy cave living with squirrels and are on Instagram, you've run up on 'suggested posts' from women that have similar hashtags as you. They also possess perfectly curated feeds that portray a life of handwashing their laundry, wearing a hand-sewn skirt, daintily touching the tops of daisies as they walk blissfully into the yonder field garden with a straw hat. In this description, in no way am I suggesting that there's anything wrong with this portrait of pretty. Instead, I am speaking on the psychology behind these photos. The feeds depict an inauthentic narrative. Perhaps there's no winning in my argument of moral high ground. I'll be the first to admit that this kind of aesthetic had me in knots once upon a time, and since I'm not one for legging it in failure, I took the stance to understand why this phenomenon fascinated me while also simultaneously drove me mad. At the end of this post, perhaps it'll be a touch of recognition that if anyone else reading who also enjoys Instagram will come to an understanding of what I'm attempting to convey. Then we will be quite able to readjust our values and the importance of where we place our worth and significance. Most doctors, therapists, pastors (anyone really) would admonish folks to reduce their time on social media, avoid or even leave the app altogether. Still, I am among those in complete opposition to this suggestion. Teaching or admonishing folks to go, run scared, or fear emotions or feelings is a cowardly way to teach, quite disempowering and limited in self-belief. All aspects of life possess a combination of contrast and similarity. This next part will sound snarky, but to make this diary entry possess harmless wit; I've chosen to poke fun this way.

It's the fresh start of a new day; you've since shuttled off your precious cherubs, little Johnny and Fanny May to school, and your opening up Instagram over your cuppa. As you open the app, you begin receiving "suggested posts" as you like an old fashioned country scene as much as the rest of us, so you tap the image of soap Sally with her perfectly curated photo. She is dappled in a prairie skirt with her two points five children dressed to the nine in their coordinating corduroy knickers and handknitted cap. (She crocheted herself, of course, because she has the ball of yarn and knitting needles displayed aimlessly on the table to prove it, errr...). The rugrats are nicely seated in their rider wagon. They stop along the way picking apples from her orchard, with chickens running amuck looking blissfully into the distance with a smile of contented contemplation upon her peachy cheeks overspread with the deepest of blush and opaque skin. No, ma'am, this is not her cottage; she rents that cottage, those chickens are not hers, they're her neighbours, It's not her orchard, it's her inlaws. One must willingly turn to see this fallacy out of necessity and be more me.

I'll be the first to admit I devise photos, but if someone in my comment section asks me about specifics in the picture or has a question or comment, I have the wherewithal to answer them with the truth. I'm not going to pretend I didn't see their statement or ignore their questions. This blatant avoidance is inauthentic and fraudulent, in my opinion. One would have to be entirely observant to notice such things, and that's the problem with me (according to others). I notice everything. I think it's time to utilise Instagram for a fun place to post with no expectations; that's all well and dandy, but as soon as you begin asking folks to buy your peddled goods, all bets are off. You are now an influencer and proprietor, and you have a responsibility to those following you that are giving you their attention. It amazes me the number of times in the past that I would see these same women brazenly ignore their followers (I consider my followers as Charles Dickens would call them "personally affectionate" and like no other man's). I thought we were kindred enough (having followed you for seven-plus year's) to believe we were on a friendly basis. But no, friendly my eye. Forgive me for living, as my conclusion was false according to you. This debacle is the nonsense that would baffle me.

Only to be slighted, and then months later, this same person is hawking their art, and you better bloody well buy it because she's got two small children (one pregnancy no one even knew about) to send to boarding school. Yeah, no, I'll pass, darling, and many others will after a time too. It won't take long for this turn of events to understand why their engagement is at a new low. Dear girl, this is why. It takes an enormous amount of self-love, self-awareness and vulnerability to see the error of one's ways when one does not respect those that have given you their attention. Now go at once and make right your follies.

Allow me to tell you how slow living, sustainable life truly is, and not the meek humbled out version these folks want you to believe. I live a life on a small farm, and I promise you, the clothes look purely medieval, worn to smithereens, the children are cheeky little devils, and those photos are not easy peasy to bring forward. They are bloody tricky. It takes a buckboard of time; I know this; I've been a blogger for 17 years. I know this as I was in set production, and nothing is as simplistic as it appears. If it looks too good to be true, it is; trust me, darling. If you believe these ridiculous photos to be accurate and put your self-concept of weight into the mix, you'll be bitterly disappointed come sunset. I'm your fairy godmother, and I'm here to forewarn you there is nothing you need to compare yourself to when it pertains to these feeds on Instagram. It's a slow fall; so often, women do not recognise their attachment or reach until they start feeling dreadfully unhappy when they log on. It comes in slow and steady. That is how beliefs and comparisons are born; a truth well-fixed they come on relatively quiet. I enjoy sharing on Instagram as my intentions in life I have always tried and will continue to devote myself entirely to assisting and advocating for other women to love themselves wholeheartedly, to become the hero of their own story.

If we can't speak freely and from a place of love but also laced with firm boldness, we've not learned anything. I am bold sufficiently to speak on topics like religion. I think this blog and my books are my vindication and validation. But, most importantly, I have given myself the gifts of assurance and love, which is most important.

Folks hear me, and that validity encourages me to continue buttoning down the hatches in speaking on this topic. Awareness of ourselves and particular subjects is how we heal in this forest of fools. I now universally comprehend no one gets past their follies without consequence, so perhaps, after all is said and done, that's all the clarity one needs.

Suppose I've seen it once. I've seen it a thousand times now. A humble little mum starts an Instagram account with all the joys of spreading good cheer and her faith with scriptures to boot at the end of a post. A noted scripture reference is a beautiful thing; however, when these same women begin collecting a following, starting a cottage industries business and excluding any person who bats an eyelash at having a difference of opinion, they lose their senses. Why this happens is purely many women hide behind a veil of insecurity. When most women of religion create a facade of illusion, hence prime example (Rachel Hollis) of appearances mean everything until the mask slips. A woman that is so fragile as to reject humility and has no observation only to retreat from the window fearful of being seen is common among religious women. I mean no disrespect in stating this; I was very much this woman, so I freely narrate this viewpoint. The solution is to create a revolution of stable women in their self-concept and rise in self-love and personal power. This opinion will remain my motto, and I will speak on it without letting up.

Here is a list of things that you might want to reflect on if you start an Instagram or before you decide to start following every single Fannie May account that sounds as lovely as Jo from Little Women.

I. Does Soap Sally show her sensibilities by being authentic, or is what she says a humblebrag, admittedly. One is intentionally straightforward. The other comes in from the back gate of subtle negative toxic manipulation.

II. Does Soap Sally respond to her 'personal affectionates' in the comment section or dismisses questions about a particular subject in a 'said' descriptive photo, or only gives selected women her attention.

III. Does Soap Sally go inactive on her account only to pop back up months later and not give you details, but tell you (her followers) she has "something special" in which she's been working? (Oh, by the way, you didn't even know she moved house and had a baby or that she was even pregnant for the second time. Wait. What? 

I'm all in for representing a beautiful photo. It is Instagram, after all. Although most have abandoned the aesthetic feel of pretty pictures (which Instagram initially was created by ), I'm still old school and care about my grid aesthetic.

I fully understand photoshopping out a light switch or using a pretty filter; I'm not that daft. However, my issue lies in the rubbish that these women are not competitive. Tick off any one of them, and one hour into posting, they delete hashtags because they don't want Millie May to comprehend their hashtag formula and pass them in follower count. Yes, this is a thing. I'm not blowing soot up your chimney. Not to mention becoming so head inflated that they budge up against a giant (similar) account so that they can highjack their followers and seemingly act like they're the best o' pals, my eye. (Wink, wink, moat or beam in the eye, anyone, anyone.) I have since sacked all of these accounts for myself, and to some, I may come off as a bitter Betty, but that's a conclusion I subjectively allow because I believe in free thinking.

I no longer have an internal fight with this variance (which feels entirely liberating), so now I want to share with others in the hopes I can use my blog platform to shed light on issues such as this. I understand mindset now, and it's a self-worth issue at the core. Do not accept when another woman attempts to delude and perpetuate an inaccurate narrative. We have the freeborn right to say no to taking nonsense from other folks. Saying no is not an unfortunate acquaintance; it is admirable that we are powerful as women to say what we will not tolerate, in a graceful, non-confrontational but firm and bold way with self-confidence and honour.

In closing, always universal laws dictate, so that's an excellent variable. When a person is unequally yoked, the universal gods will separate folks through the map of consciousness. So in all, this post was far more than a penny for my thoughts and more quids in!

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx


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