Have you heard of an online or Instagram community? I never really knew about it or even thought about “joining” a community but then I ended up unknowingly (more like unplanned actually) in an Instagram community! Though some people may find it weird or impossible, it is something I am so grateful for and so glad to have in my life – being part of a community actually changed and impacted my life – specifically my health and fitness journey!
For me, being part of an Instagram community means that I have a place where I can connect with like-minded and like-interest people. I am active and involved in the Blogilates community on Instagram as well as POP Army and PIIT 28. It started off when I did the blogilates beginner’s calendar and journey to splits challenge. I shared my progress on Instagram and used the hashtag #blogilates then I started doing PIIT 28 and used the hashtag #piit28. When I became POP Pilates certified I started using the hashtag #poparmy. Through these hashtags I was able to find others on a similar journey as mine and they were also able to find me. Through what we had in common we were able to “connect” (like finding the right chemistry lol).
I have seen many benefits of being part of a community online or more specifically on Instagram. Here are 4 benefits based on my experience:
- Accountability – When I wanted to eat clean, work out regularly, get into a splits I “put it out there”. My community cheered me on and I was also able to cheer on others on similar journeys as me.
- Unlikely friendships – I have made friends with people from all walks of life. Wonderful, sweet people of different ages, religion, background, country, language. I have even met some in person and it is as if we have known each other for years.
- People who “get you” – Some people might not understand why we share what we share on Instagram just like they might not get the idea of a “community” online but once you find your tribe and you know they totally accept you and what you share, you will suddenly have an outlet to talk, share and be excited about happenings that those physically around you might not understand.
- Networking – You can ask questions, share resources, exchange information, know more people and gain more information and knowledge about the world through the experience of others.
There are a few other communities I am aware of like the bbg community, a community for runners, yogis, fit fam, overcoming eating disorders, hand lettering, brush lettering, Bible journaling – you name it! Whatever your interest is or where you are in life (expecting mom, mom with toddlers, traveling, cooking) you can find your community as easily as searching for hashtags and also putting hashtags on your pictures that you post. Like and comment genuinely, and you will meet and follow people you feel you have something in common with or connect with and they will also do the same to you.
A good community to be in is one where you feel safe to really be yourself and where you feel you can share freely without being judged. A place where you and people you interact with are encouraging, inclusive, understanding and supportive.
Do you “believe” in a virtual community? What benefits have you seen from being part of an online community?