One of my favorite aspects of social media is the community you can find or build on the platforms. Each platform has it’s own advantages, but they all offer something especially when you may have experiences that others around can’t quite understand such as living with a disability. Dealing with my disability is rarely ever easy, but social media, rather the content created by others with a disability helps me keep a positive mindset especially on the difficult days.
How Social Media Helps Me Maintain A Positive Mindset
Facebook Groups: Facebook Groups are gold and I say that not only as a content creator but as a person with a disability. I’ve have joined many groups for people with disabilities and I have learned so much from the other members. There is nothing particularly special about these groups, but you know that the members can understand and relate to situations you face in a way that those around may not be able to do. I’ve talked about how I have responded to certain situations involving someone who is able-bodied when they ask about my wheelchair, found suggestions for so many situations in my life, and so much more.
If you haven’t done so yet, I encourage you to join a Facebook group or two if you have a disability. You can join general groups. For example, if you are a wheelchair user, look for those groups, or join groups that are specific to your disability, you can even create your own and build it up into the type of community you want it to be.
Events: Events are a great way to meet and connect with other individuals that have disabilities. From a simple virtual dance class to webinars, or seminars, you get the chance to do something fun, interesting, or just have a great discussion about disability issues and rights. Although many things are postponed or virtual at the moment, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look for them or attend. If the event is virtual, it may be different, but it doesn’t make it any less valuable, in fact, maybe it’s even more so because if the event was actually being held somewhere, there’s no guarantee you would have been able to travel for it.
What Social Media Has Taught Me About Being A Content Creator And Having A Disability
Positivity Is Authentic: Social media plays a part in my outlook and positive mindset towards my disability, but it has also taught me a few things about being a content creator as well. A few weeks ago, I saw a post on Instagram and the caption actually inspired me to write this post. Louise, also known as @justawheelchairgirl on Instagram, wrote: “In our attempt to celebrate the authentic and ‘being real’ it’s like we’ve now started to outshame the ‘perfect’.People get judged for having Instagram profiles with beautiful pictures and positive vibes – as if that’s not authentic enough, that’s fake or unreal. Being positive doesn’t make you any less authentic. It just shows that you’re a strong person who’s able to see the positive despite your struggles.” To read the full caption and follow her on Instagram click here.
When I read this caption, I immediately liked it and commented on the post telling her that I was so glad she wrote this because I worried about it with my own content. When I first put more effort into my blog and growing my Instagram this year, I was concerned that some people would think my content lacked authenticity because I wasn’t really talking about my disability, but about fashion or makeup. When I did write about life with a disability, I tried to make the content sound positive. After reading this post I realized that it was okay to look for the positive aspect in things and share that as my view of a situation, doing so doesn’t mean that my content is fake or unreal, or mean that I’m not being authentic.
We Can Inspire Others: Inspiration. The way I feel when I hear that word is dependent upon whether it’s in reference to my disability or something else, when it’s the former, usually, it comes from someone who is about to tell me I inspire them just because I’m living my life. However, I don’t want to talk about that now. I’m talking about inspiring others in our community, the community of people with disabilities. You may have gone through something that someone else is struggling with now or vice versa. The way I see it, if you are a content creator like me, then you have an opportunity to inspire to continue through a rough time, or be the person you wish was your role model when you were younger; if you can inspire someone to reach for their goals, despite challenges of their disability, that’s even better.
Living with a disability has taught me so much about life and experiencing some situations and getting through them, has taught me so much about myself and where I want to go in my life. That being said, I also recognize the value in a community that has similar experiences. Social media has enabled me to not only spread a positive message about living life with a disability, but connect with others who are doing the same, learn from them, and be inspired by them. Whatever mindset you are in about life with your disability, I can say it’s worth it to connect with others especially in Facebook groups, and even if you’re not sure if you can get something out of it, stick around, because your point of view and experiences may just help someone else.
Has social media helped you keep a positive mindset on life with a disability some days? Let me know in the comments below.