The Edit

Sunday, 24 September 2017

That night I went viral again

I've always thought that if I ever go 'viral' on the interwebs again, it would be for my leaked HOT AF NUDES (just kidding fam. This is a wholesome environment and I have no nudes... yet). Who would have thought it would be election related?
I peaked on Twitter last night. The #1 trending hashtag in New Zealand right now is #decision17, the top tweet in that mine. At the time of writing this, that tweet has been seen 43,170+ times in less than 24 hrs. 661 people have liked it, and 260 people have retweeted and it's been entertaining to read the captions from the retweets.

The thing is, I am a nobody with a social media account. I sat in my living room last night watching TV, stuffing my face with oreo cheesecake, live tweeted what was on my mind... nek minnit #viral. Do you understand how powerful you are now? How fucking powerful that voice of yours is? And how little it takes for your voice to be heard and amplified?
Last night I felt the same passion I had when I wrote my marriage equality piece many moons ago. The one that went viral. The one that made me realise for the first time how important it was to be vocal and honest and to speak up.
Take the opportunity to show up and use your voice. Whatever final results we get, change won't happen overnight. Let's not forget that it's not the responsibility of the elected officials alone to decide how our country will be. You play a part in this too. A big part.
I know it's easy to feel disheartened and understandably so. But I've always believed that change should start in an individual level. At the top of my head, these are some concrete steps I would like to commit to: be more engaged in politics and educate myself more, if possible donate the tax cut to charities that will support underfunded causes, genuinely listen to other people's opinions with the intention of listening instead of listening for rebuttal/argument/debate straight away. Get to know my elected leaders. Form that connection with them. Make it known that I am as committed to making New Zealand better, just like them, however different our views on how that looks like might be. Get to know my community and find ways on how I can better support it. Connect. Be visible. Volunteer. Speak up more. Consume all kinds of media and not just from sources biased to your belief (escape your bubble is a wonderful chrome extension that can help you with this).
NZ’s diversity extends to the beliefs we uphold. What fascinates me is the 'why' in people genuinely thinking that the parties they vote for are the way forward. We have been so busy advocating for what we believe in (which is a good thing tbh) but maybe it won't hurt to listen more too, and not making others see things from our perspective just to see the why. I honestly think knowing people’s ‘why’ should inform our ‘how’. Respecting other’s right to their beliefs and essentially democracy itself doesn’t mean you can’t challenge it. These conversations will probably be uncomfortable (because how do you start this when it’s with a family member, close friend, etc) but maybe we have more chance at being heard if we mutually agree to listen first.
Lastly look after yourself and each other. If you’re feeling depressed/hopeless/overwhelmed by all of this right now, log off social media. Cuddle your pet. Eat the chocolate. Create. Make art. Binge watch Netflix (highly recommend The Lizzie Mcguire movie because Hilary Duff singing a duet with Hilary Duff really is what dreams are made of!).
The road ahead is long and winding, and breaks are not only important but a necessity because we're in it for the long run. We have so much work to do, friends. Now is not the time to give up. In the words of Britney Spears, our queen mother, “now get to work bitch.”
Regardless of who you voted for and where you stand, what can YOU personally do to make New Zealand the New Zealand you want to live in? (Feel free to slide in to my DM's if you're uncomfortable sharing it here and I'll publish it for you)
Arohanui 💚❤️💙💛🖤💜💖 (the last heart with the sparkles is probably my emoji if I have my own party and I say our aesthetics would probs be rose gold 😂)

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