Eight inspiring local Instagram’s to spice up your feed

Eight inspiring local Instagram’s to spice up your feed

Words by Tehya Nicholas

Scrolling, but make it worthwhile.

Lockdown has taught us many things: washing your hands is a good habit, face masks can be kind of fun… But by far the most valuable takeaway is the importance of having a healthy, inspirational Instagram feed. If hours are going to go in, some gosh-darn mood boosters should come out. So, we went ahead and researched some local legends whose Instagram feeds are nothing but goodness. We’re talking comedy, education, motivation and of course some juicy aesthetics.

Open up the app, we’re going in…

Non-binary and queer icon check. Fashion and celebrity stylist Deni Todorovic is everything IG needs more of; creative, fabulous and pioneering. Deni works as the fashion editor at GT Magazine, so their feed is full of exciting OOTDs. Not to mention some legitimately inspirational dance videos – all while wearing heels of course. They also run an IGTV series ‘DeniTV’ where they interview inspiring Australians every Thursday, as well as fashion advice on Wednesdays. The home of genius meets glam.

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Yesterday’s protest and the global displays of solidarity over the last week, restores my faith in humanity. The over arching feeling I walked away with yesterday was one of equality. At the end of it all, equality is a basic human right and something that should not be a privilege. I will never take fore granted the long hard fight to equality, led by a black trans woman and so many queer forefathers, mothers and everyone in between – before me. Their fight, their protests, their voices have given me the privilege to stand here, before you, in a beautifully printed kaftan, high waist wide legged trousers, metallic heels and a face full of make up. It’s because of those who were not silent, that I and the generations after me inch closer and closer to equality. It’s because of the future generations of this world, that I have not been able to stay silent and have marched both physically and emotionally alongside my brothers and sisters. I’m not sure if in my lifetime I’ll ever see equality manifest in its truest form – but my goodness I was inspired yesterday and have been all week, at the voices of the young. The children who aren’t afraid to say silent. The future is in our hands but it’s especially in the hands of the children who rise up into the next generation. I salute them and I stand by them! wearing @camillawithlove pieces from their latest ‘Fairy Fountain’ drop which is available online now. Images beautifully taken by @monika_berry #Equality #HumanRights #CamillaWithLove #Camilla

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Geelong local Chris Warrior founded the Indigenous wellbeing community Blackfitness after a major lifestyle shake-up. The dad-of-two embraced fitness into his own life, and has encouraging thousands of others along the way. The wellness page is a motivational mix of abs, fitness advice and proud support of Aboriginal culture. We couldn’t stan it harder.

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Chris Warrior (Kokatha/Wirangu) – In Darwin for training and I always wanted to visit this gym @fitazdarwingym and meet Steve Cardona and see this iconic gym that changes peoples lives, mentally and physically. He has such positive energy and meeting him for the first time today, he is passionate and wants to see our brothers and sisters make positive life choices. I was so excited and also a surreal moment to visit this gym and see that palya flag on the wall and that iconic Ute that I got to drive around in today as community people honked at him on the streets (true story). Smashed a workout with 21/19/9 reps for DB Snatch – Wall Ball Squats – Kettlebell Swings – Power Wheel walks – Power Wheel crunch push ups (hard omg). Glad to have worked out in this gym but as people would know Darwin starting wet season it's sweat city and im glad that those fans were there!!!! Thank you @steve_fitazdarwingym for your amazing hospitality and I got to work out in his amazing gym. Keen to get a training top and thank you for the power wheel which I will use and give you progress shots. If you are in Darwin get to his gym you fullas!!!! #fitness #fitaz #healthy #functionalfitness #corefitness #powerwheel #focused #wetseason #amazing #inspiring #inspireothers #blackfitness #Darwin #northernterritory #ntfitness #Aboriginalhealth #cardona #sweaty #workout #core

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Men’s mental health does not often get the light of day it should, but that’s something Gabe McClelland is changing with his initiative @heymate._. Founded in Geelong, Hey Mate provides a safe and inclusive space for men to talk openly about their mental health, foster community and support one another. Meetings are now online thanks to COVID-19, but that just means even more accessibility. This local legend’s page is a wonderful reminder that it’s normal (and healthy!) for men to talk about their feelings. No matter your gender, this feed is definitely worth giving a follow.

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To be a man of more words. This year with the help of many inspiring individuals, I have found more words, a voice to raise awareness and to help reduce any stigma that for generations has shielded a man from being a man, instead forcing them to be the stereotypical. In July this year, I shared my battle with mental health that controlled my life from the age of 12. At the time I didn’t recognise what I was up against and little did I know that I would be medicated for the next 14 years. It was a fucking battle with my own mind. It now fucking scares me to think how many men are struggling to find their words and in fact “putting up” with it. That being vulnerable and asking for help is a sign of weakness. “Men don’t cry, nor do we ask for help. We’re are invincible and strong” this has been the characteristics of a man since I have been on this earth. Well it’s time to be blunt. Men cry. We get emotional from time to time. We aren’t invincible and we don’t always have our shit together and that’s totally ok. If your letting your ego get in the way of your mental health, don’t. If you’re worried about judgement, you’re in the wrong circle. We need to normalise the discussion of men (and women) who seek help. Who are medicated and those who are battling an illness. This is not a battle that you need to fight alone. I got this to remind me and others to speak up and that the best chats aren’t always the easy chats. You and your words matter.

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Authentic, real, imperfectly perfect bodies unite! Run by Geelong-local Amber Gwynn – also the brains behind fashion label Nyata – Nonairbrushedme embraces everything quirky and original about the human form. It’s unbridled support for stretchmarks, cellulite, curves and wrinkles is not only inspirational, but essential for breaking down unhelpful stereotypes around beauty. Extra points for the peachy-pink aesthetic.

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Via @bodyposipanda – : @alex_cameron Today was the first day in a lot of years that I found myself scrolling through the posts of an impossibly beautiful model and wishing I knew how it felt to look like that. I wondered how the people she dates treat her – is she constantly worshipped? Does she still get screwed over? How easy must it be to find someone else when it doesn't work out? Would the person I'm dating like her better? I wondered how it feels existing online with so many likes pouring in on every outfit post. How every shot could be a front cover. How it feels to be the ideal. I wondered how clothes feel when they fit like that and whether she was really having as good of a time in that club as it seems. How much of that joy comes from moving through the world in a way that looks completely flawless. I've never seen someone who is SO exactly the way I dreamed of looking for nearly my entire life. And it shook me. So now I'm catching myself. Because I know that this person probably deals with the same shit in their dating life as the rest of us do – beauty is not a guarantee for respect or connection or understanding. Because I know that there is space on the internet for both of us, and that looking like the ideal was never the point of what I'm doing here. It isn't why any of you are here either, and I am so so grateful you are here. Because she maybe still changed her outfit 8 times and felt insecure and retook the picture over & over and didn't have that good of a time. Because I know nothing about her and her life other than the fact that she's up against the same suffocating standards of beauty that I am, and she's surviving the best she can too. I will never know how it feels to look like her. And that's okay. I know how it feels to look like me. Every tear it took in recovery. Every moment of freedom that body acceptance gave me. Every effort to build this level of peace and every privilege that still made the building easier. Every bite, every breath, every bit of sunlight this body has allowed me to feel. I know how it feels to look like me, and I know now that I was never supposed to be anyone else. I

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The inner witch in all of us will feel raise her head when scrolling through Allira Potter’s account. Full of gleaming images of sage, crystals and stunning Aboriginal art, Allira’s feed decolonise the wellness space and showcases the magic of Aboriginal culture. For a spiritual glow up, look no further.

Jo Betz is a widow, but not in the way you would imagine. Author of Grief – a guided journal, Jo is reshaping what it means to be grieve through storytelling and honest advice on her account. The feed is a vibrant selection of family snaps and infographics that will keep your spirits high. Whether you’ve experienced the death of a loved one, a painful breakup, or know somebody that has, her page will provide all the support you need to get through it.

Learning about mindful creativity while also scrolling through one of the most aesthetically pleasing feeds you’ve ever seen?! It seems impossible, but occupational therapist Tessa Lloyd pulls it off on her Insta. Founder of @ourmindfulyouth, a clinic that provides therapy support for young people in Geelong and The Bellarine Peninsula, Tessa is committed to building creativity, communication and connection. Take a gander through her feed and you’ll be sure to feel a surge of positive energy.

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Here’s the thing about stepping up, using your voice and being brave in your work / life: you CANNOT expect that you won’t be misunderstood, questioned, ridiculed, discussed and disrespected. You will overhear things, you will have people make comments, you will have moments of questioning yourself. And the hilarious thing is, the people who will try to do this to you, are the ones sitting safely in the crowd. Paralysed by fear, warped by their own limitations, and armoured up in defenses. Make no mistake, there are people living behind a glass wall, in a cage they have built for themselves. And the pressure in that little cage of fear and armour, creates oh so much judgement, criticism and unwarranted opinions. These are the opinions that you let wash over you. Drop them to the ground at the end of the day like your clothes. The people that I consciously choose to be in my life, are leading from the heart. Fucking scared of course, but showing up vulnerably and doing it beautifully and rawly. These are the opinions that I care about. I send every new scary project through to about 5 people who I watch show up every day, and who support me as I show up even when I’m worried that the result will be shit. If I’ve shown up for myself, and they can tell me that they see that, then I’m good. Brene said it best, of course. “The third thing I learned has turned into a mandate by which I live: If you are not in the arena getting your ass kicked on occasion, I’m not interested in or open to your feedback. There are a million cheap seats in the world today filled with people who will never be brave with their lives but who will spend every ounce of energy they have hurling advice and judgement at those who dare greatly. Their only contributions are criticism, cynicism, and fear mongering. If you’re criticizing from a place where you’re not also putting yourself on the line, I’m not interested in what you have to say.” To my people out there having a CRACK regardless of what we KNOW small minds are saying; KEEP GOING. Keep showing up and watch as you make shit sparkle. Leave those people in their little cages; if they want to get out they’ll need to step up, too.

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You have probably already heard of Angus O’Loughlin, HIT Radio presenter, but do you tune in to his podcast ListenABLE with Dylan Alcott? If not, get on it. It’s a candid, funny discussion that aims to challenge what you think living with a disability looks like. A very worthwhile listen. Plus, Angus’s Insta is home to a hilarious assortment of Drunk History videos, his journey to fatherhood (soon to be) and the occasional celebrity selfie. This Geelong boy made good.