Do you know who she is? A reality star with half a million followers on Instagram. Yes, you will immediately call her an influencer – an influential and totally trendy person. Moreover, she is a role model for many young people! I wonder why? What are her qualities, talents, knowledge?
Why should we look up to so-called reality stars, people who have rarely done well in terms of education or serious business, people who most often make a “career” through scandals, selling their intimacy and creating conflicts with other reality show participants...
Why wouldn’t we look up to, for example, writers, doctors, pilots, teachers... as was the case until a couple of decades ago, when people used to tip their hat when meeting a teacher.
I often hear the elderly, but also young people, finding the following excuse for this state of affairs: “These are the times we live in”. Yes, they are... but this is exactly why we should change them!
Why wouldn’t we appreciate real “influencers” again? For example, brave and devoted people, like those pilots who flew and saved lives during the war? Or writers who wrote for years in order to publish a book? Or doctors who face illness and death on a daily basis, trying to help patients? They do not think about popularity or “followers” and yet they give us so much. Why aren’t they the “influencers” of our time?
We could make retrospectives and comparisons for hours – how it used to be and how it is now. But we are living at this moment and we cannot return to the past... However, we can change our present, review it critically, choose who we “imitate”, what we watch, read and listen to...
Let us, for example, take the perspective of a 70-year-old doctor who retired long ago. It may come as a surprise, but perhaps he also watches reality programmes. However, he is already mature enough to assess what is high-quality content, so he may be watching such a programme just to laugh at that lack of quality.
On the other hand, we teenagers need to be aware of who we are and who we look up to.
So, let’s be our own influencers!
Let’s believe in education, culture and good manners. That is the only way to become real “influencers”, role models for ourselves and for others.
Let’s choose what we watch and who we look up to!
Lana, 15, is a student in Podgorica, who likes to volunteer and help people. She has been a member of a folklore ensemble for 9 years. She is also a Golden Advisor of the Ombudsman, a radio host of a national radio programme, and a young reporter - a volunteer UNICEF.