My blog recently celebrated its third birthday on the Tumblr platform, and in those three years, a whole lot has changed in my life – for better or for worse. And, a lot of this was reflected and shared on my little corner of the Internet.
You see, blogging is often viewed as a one-way form of communication. We write about our thoughts, feelings, and ideas. People read it and pass it along. But, Tumblr has managed to change that; it’s created a community that gives us something in return. In fact, Tumblr has provided me with a lot more than I could have ever imagined on that first day I posted.
Motivation and Inspiration
The whole idea behind Tumblr is that you get to build your own news feed. You get updates from other blogs that you want to hear from. So, whatever your motivation may be, you can create that daily feed for yourself. Personally, I focus a lot of my time on health and fitness. And, the Fitblr community is one to be reckoned with; we’re a whole bunch of people who care about our health, pushing ourselves to our max, and making ourselves the best we can be. Dare I say a bunch of badasses on the regular?
These are my people. These are the people who give me the extra push and encouragement to work hard day-in and day-out. This kind of collective mindset isn’t easily found on other platforms. It’s nice to hear from them, and see their progress – it reminds me that we can do anything we put our mind to.
I also follow a ton of hilarious people (these aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive – Fitblrs are funny, too!), who give me the inspiration to keep on keepin’ on. Hard days happen, and we all go through them. But together, and with a little humor sprinkled in, we can take on those hard days full-force and make them a little bit more manageable.
These people pick me up when I’m having a bad day, cheer me on when I’m doing great things, and join me in celebration when the time calls for it. The improvement in my self-confidence is, in large part, due to the amazing people on this platform.
I’m fortunate enough to say that I’ve met a handful of Tumblrs in real life, and we’ve immediately hit it off. Whether we have only met once, or I hang out with them almost every day, we’re true, life-long friends. We understand each other, and we enjoy each other’s company. It’s an immediate friendship.
Some may say that meeting people from the Internet is an odd thing (believe me, I’ve been one to say this myself), but – as cliché as it sounds – there’s an unspoken bond between Tumblrs. We’re open to meeting each other, we follow along with each other’s daily lives, and we are each other’s cheerleaders.
For those whom I have never met in person, it doesn’t really feel that way. It’s sort of similar to how college friends communicate after graduation – we check in, see what’s new, and stay tuned in on life events. And, I know that if we do ever meet in person, it will be the same as meeting other Tumblrs – positive, effortless and enjoyable.
This year, we even started a Tumblr Ladies Fantasy Football League. Sixteen of us across the country compete each week against one another throughout the fall season – trash talking included and strongly encouraged. Sounds pretty fun, right? Because it is.
A True Sense of Community
This one might be the most important point to me, personally, and the top reason why I love this group of people so much. It’s the purest form of community, and one that you can’t replicate anywhere else. We truly care about one another, and connect with each other outside of the platform, too.
Last year, during the Boston bombings, I took an Instagram photo of the 25 mile marker, where I was standing. A few Tumblrs, who follow me on Instagram, too, liked it and commented on it. A few hours later, we all know what happened. At the time, I was seeing someone who lived in another city, and because of the cell service being down, he was unable to reach me.
For all those who were unable to reach their friends and family in Boston, a website was created to confirm who was heard from and safe from harm. Later that night, I was able to call said guy and say I was okay. While he was happy to hear from me, he also already knew – apparently someone from Tumblr had confirmed that I was okay on this website (because they knew through me confirming on the previously mentioned Instagram photo), and he found out when he searched for my name.
To make this point even more clear, after this horrible tragedy, Fitblrs organized a Run for Boston. New York Fitblrs joined in Central Park to show their support and dedication to those affected by that day – and I was fortunate enough to be visiting that day (prior to my permanent move) and able to join – while other Fitblrs around the country ran at that same time in their respective locations. There was a camaraderie that you can’t explain, and a comforting feeling offered by this movement.
See, we aren’t only connected through Tumblr – that’s really only the beginning. These relationships extend beyond just that one platform, and into our everyday lives. My Tumblr friends cared about my safety that day, posted notes online sending hope and prayers, and checked in any way that they could. That’s the beauty of this community. It’s filled with genuine love and support, and we look out for each other. We’re a family, only separated by our IP addresses.
What’s my point here? It’s not just to highlight my true appreciation for this community (while that may be part of it, too). It’s to really feature what Tumblr has to offer for every single one of us. And so, if you have the opportunity, time, or interest in joining this platform, I strongly encourage that you do. I promise you’ll find a sense of self and a sense of community regardless of your interests. And, I promise that it will, in some way, be a benefit to the continued growth of who you are.