The challenge of representation

How do you include everyone?

It’s not as simple as black and white although in some cases that might seem like enough. I suppose I’ve learnt and am learning that it’s about having minorities be seen.

Sometimes people make the mistake of being bare minimum. They use a sea of sameness with one person that’s ‘other’ in order to look like they’re being inclusive. In reality they might just be trying to tick a box.

But it’s not always straight forward because when you’re used to only focusing on one type of person, how do you grow away from that authentically?

And then we have to ask the question of what’s authentic anyway and who decides?

I’m online enough to know that everyone is a critic these days and people only need to see a glimpse of something to get the pitchforks ready and call you out.

If a brand went from showing one type of person to a wider variety people will day they’re jumping on the bandwagon or that it’s not enough because what about xyz.

It’s easy to be critical but it’s worth asking yourself if it’s actually helping or if you’re just adding to the noise.

Effects of choosing kindness

You have the choice to treat people however you like and sometimes that will depend on how much you care.

Small acts of kindness can allow you to escape your own mind for long enough to remember that we’ve all got stuff going on.

Without knowing it, sometimes the kindness of strangers can be enough to change someone’s mood or brighten their day.

It doesn’t have to be something big, it could be as small as making someone a drink or picking something up that you thought they’d like when you’re out shopping.

In order to do those things you have to get out of your head a little and pay attention to what’s around you. In some ways kindness is about not being bare minimum.

You do it because you want to, not because you have to.

Minimum effort required

I used to think that I was the kind of person that went above and beyond, always doing more than the bare minimum.

That was until I had a situation where I found myself doing the bare minimum and I realised that this was not the first time.

I’d fallen into being a bare minimum betty a long time ago. Probably from when I first stared to face challenges in my life. I got into the habit of thinking ‘well I don’t know how to do this so I’ll just do as much as I can and hope it’s enough.’

In many cases I got into the habit of just not trying or giving up quite easily. In some cases I’d just avoid whatever doing the thing I found challenging until the last minute so I couldn’t give more than the minimum effort because I didn’t have the time.

The worst part is, it’s been easy to keep up with because often the bare minimum is just enough.