Michelle Ntalami, the CEO of Marini Naturals, had recently hit a major milestone on Instagram - 500,000 followers. To celebrate this achievement, she shared five things she had stopped and started doing on social media.
First on her list was overgiving, a trait that she openly admitted to having. "I'm an overgiver," she said. "Experience taught me to check myself."
She explained that although she loved showing love and support to people and businesses, she had learned that not everyone appreciated or reciprocated these efforts.
Second on Michelle's list was addressing rumours about her private life. "Unless or until I decide to speak on it," she said, "I won't address rumors about my private life."
She explained that rumours should not stop her from living her life, and until she decided to address them, people were free to speculate all they wanted.
Third on Michelle's list was alcohol consumption. She made it clear that she would only post about consuming alcohol if it was a partnership or brand that genuinely fit her lifestyle.
"Alcohol abuse is becoming glorified in our society," she said. "It's the cause of many tragedies, stunted personal growth, broken homes and relationships; all the stuff I don’t subscribe to."
Michelle chose to use her influential platform to promote a more positive and healthier lifestyle.
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Fourth on her list was openly discussing her preferences on sensitive matters. "There is a thin line between living authentically and opening up yourself for unnecessary contempt," she said. "The former can still be done without being a martyr."
Michelle believes that it was important to live authentically but also to be mindful of how one's views might be received by others.
Finally, Michelle made it clear that she would never bully, insult or condone it, irrespective of the situation.
"That's abuse and IMO, the lowest form of etiquette on this App," she said.
She said there was a difference between a clapback and bullying, and she would only engage in the former when necessary.
After sharing the five things she had stopped doing on social media, Michelle moved on to the five things she had started doing.
First on her list was sharing more about business, womanhood and lifestyle, and less about her private life.
"I want to inspire and uplift my followers," she said. "And I believe I can do that by sharing my knowledge and experiences in areas that are important to me."
Second on Michelle's list was following people and pages that inspired, taught, healed, reciprocated energy and spread positivity.
"I want to surround myself with positivity," she said. "And by following accounts that align with my values, I'm able to do that."
Third on her list was reaching out to people being cyberbullied and sharing with them a word of encouragement, even if she didn't know them.
"I hate to see someone being trolled," she said. "My heart literally breaks for them." Michelle believed that a kind word or gesture could go a long way in helping someone who was being targeted online.
Fourth on her list was speaking out and standing up for the truth if and when necessary. "This will always be me," she said.
Michelle was passionate about using her platform to promote positive change, and she wasn't afraid to speak out against injustice or wrongdoing.
Finally, Michelle vowed to love and live her most authentic life on Instagram without caring what anyone thinks.
"I want to be true to myself," she said. "And I won't let anyone else's opinions or judgments stop me from doing that."
Michelle hoped that sharing the things she stopped and started doing on social media would inspire her followers and provide some insight.
She believes social media is a powerful tool that can be used positively or negatively, and it was up to individuals to choose how they wanted to use it.