Anxiety is Completely Normal
First of all, it is completely normal to be anxious about participating and sharing a hobby! In a visual hobby like Lolita fashion, appearance is rather important. While it is a hobby that celebrates individualism, many of the best aspects of the fashion are enhanced by the in person and online Lolita community presence. Any anxiety you experience may originate from a variety of concerns.
What if I say or type something silly?
What if the community dislikes my Lolita coordinates?
What if I make a mistake?
What if I am teased?
What if I embarrass myself?
These are just some of the concerns I hear from new members to Lolita or people who are interested in the fashion. It is important to hone in on what your particular worries are in order to tackle them.
Take It One Step At A Time!
Take a deep breath. There is no need to jump into everything right away. It is important to know your personal strengths and weaknesses before you dive into your first component of the community. While it is helpful to go at your own pace, a key element of this fashion is to go outside of your comfort zone. Without venturing outside of your comfort zone, you'll never be able to progress.
1. Join A Community
Join a Lolita fashion community. There are many Lolita communities to choose from on a variety of places. A few popular places to connect with other Lolitas include: Amino, Facebook and EGL. What you need to look for in a community before you join are that the group has simple rules, has easy requirements, and is friendly to new Lolitas. A group that requires you to submit full coordinates to be added, demands a specific post count, or requires you to participate in a weekly challenge is most likely not the best selection for your first community. Select a group and place that works for you.
2. Participate and Post
Before you even consider adding content to your community, participate in what is already there!
Your fellow Lolita co-members are already posting photos, blog posts, polls and videos in your group. A simple 'like' on their posts is a great way to get your username out there and participate!
Comment on your fellow Lolita's posts! If you like a coordinate that someone has posted, say so and why you like it! If they post with a general question that you can easily answer, such as 'How did you discover Lolita' feel free to answer. If the website or application allows, follow your favorite co-members. This will make it so you can easily see more content from the users that you follow. This ultimately will give you more opportunities to interact with these interactive posts in the future.
3. Creating Content
Make an introductory post about yourself! You can share what style of Lolita is your favorite, what your favorite Lolita clothing brand, is and how long you have been in Lolita. Keep your post simple.
Now that you have posted in your community and have gained some confidence, post some more simple posts! Have you order new Lolita items?' How about items you would like to purchase? Do you have an opinion about a recent Lolita brand line release? Share these moments with others!
After these posts feel easy to make, how about posting an incomplete coordinate with stock images and asking the community their opinion? Since you are in a newbie friendly community, you should receive constructive and helpful tips about how to complete a fantastic Lolita coordinate. Feel free to state that you are looking for constructive criticism if you would like some extra assurance.
Raise the Bar
Ready to take it to the next level? Excellent! Now that you have built a presence online and gained some confidence, consider posting a full coordinate in your community. Admittedly, this is often the most terrifying aspect of being a part of a community. There is the chance that someone can be rude regarding your style, or there may be some unfavorable suggestions about your Lolita coordinate. That being said, there is also the chance that your community may love what you have shared! This is probably the most risky post you can make online, but it is very satisfying and relieving to do so.
Walt Disney was a firm believer in not dwelling on the past and to keep moving forward. I am a firm believer in this philosophy. You should celebrate the successes of the past, learn from your mistakes and keep improving, experimenting and, most importantly, have fun! You need to love what you do.
As your confidence grows, you will focus more on your improvements and ways to make your Lolita coordinates pop. Your involvement in the Lolita community may expand into additional communities. Perhaps you will create a Lolita based Tumblr blog, a written blog, or even a YouTube channel. The more you enjoy the fashion and what you do, the more others who recognize your passion will gravitate to you. While there will be nay-sayers in every community, but concern yourself with the people who inspire, drive, and respect you. This support, and your own determination, can get you past a lot of the negative aspects and help you focus on the positives.
I hope this post helped ease any tension about joining and participating in the Lolita community! How has your current community experience been? What are some of your tips? I would love to read your answers. If you have any questions about this or any other topic, please post below!
This is the account of one young woman and her passion for Lolita Fashion.