Are you ugly? Thousands of people ask this every day. It comes as no surprise then, to find out that one of the most popular questions entered into our search bars on our phones was ‘Am I Ugly?’

In fact, if you type “am I” into Google, the first suggestion that is offered to you is “am I ugly?”

google search results for am i ugly

Attitudes towards appearance are one of the main reasons why people are being bullied. In fact, in Ditch the Label’s 2019 Annual Bullying Survey, 59% of young people said that their appearance was the reason they were bullied.

This is not a new question. Unobtainable beauty ideals have us questioning our self-worth, based on our appearance, on a daily basis probably since the beginning of humanity.

For example in Ancient Greece, beauty standards were that men had to be buff and glossy, while women were seen as most attractive when they had red hair and a fuller-figured body. While during Victorian times, a pale face with rosy cheeks was seen as the most ‘beautiful’. These ideals and standards have changed many times over the past 1000s of years.

In 2013, a YouTube trend emerged called “Am I Ugly or Pretty?” whereby, teen girls uploaded videos of themselves asking viewers exactly that. Following this, the internet answered the question in all its force and pulled no punches.

Even in 2020, these questions are often asked on places such as Instagram, Reddit and TikTok.

@davidpostman

♬ original sound – sidthesciencedik

This question is one that matters and is something that nearly all of us will ask ourselves at some point during our lives.

So, let’s answer it!

Are you ugly or pretty?

Am I ugly because people keep saying it to me?

No, the danger is when you are called ugly enough times you start to believe it might be true.

Am I ugly because I’m single?

No, you are not single because you are ugly, and being in a relationship doesn’t make you beautiful.

Am I ugly because I keep thinking about it?

No, so please stop telling yourself you are, our thoughts very quickly become our reality.

Am I ugly because I was dumped?

No, you were NOT dumped because you are ugly, the relationship ended and that’s ok – give yourself some time and space to heal.

Am I ugly because I’m looking different?

No, your body is just changing and you are still growing into it.

Am I ugly because I have bad skin?

No, having bad skin does not make you unattractive and is totally normal.

Am I ugly because I don’t look as pretty as a model?

No, it’s ok to not look like a model. Turns out they are the only ones that do and they make up a teeny tiny amount of the population.

Am I ugly because I’m big?

No, your dress size does not determine your beauty, case in point: Tess Holiday.

Am I ugly because my friends keep saying so?

No, they are telling you that because they are scared that they aren’t good enough and have their own fears of being ugly, this doesn’t have to be your fear as well.

Am I ugly because I feel it?

No, your self-esteem has just gotten a little too low and needs rebuilding, have a look at our support guide for tips on how to begin rebuilding your self-confidence here.

Am I ugly compared to everyone else?

No, when we compare ourselves we always come off feeling worse, to compare is to despair so stop comparing.

Am I ugly because I am fat?

No, your weight is how much your body physically weighs full stop. Every single object, mineral, plant or animal on this planet has a weight. It is what we as humans equate with this number that forces us to connect beauty with weight. There is no such thing as a ‘beautiful weight’ or an ‘ugly weight.’ There is a healthy weight and that is different for everyone.

Am I ugly because I was rejected?

No, everyone experiences rejection in all its painful forms and it does not make you unattractive. Looking for ways to deal with rejection?

Am I ugly?

No, even if you have never ever felt anything but ugly your whole life right up until now that is still not proof that you are. Here’s the secret and I know because I am talking from experience, just like happiness it is all an inside job. So if you want to start changing how you feel we have some tips to help you start here.

If you aren’t feeling great about your appearance right now and need someone to talk to, Ditch the Label is here for you. Join our community and talk to us here.

join ditch the label community

Do you feel low on confidence and self-esteem today? There are 10 simple ways to help you increase your self-esteem and build confidence in yourself.

  1. Challenge bad thoughts about yourself
  2. Take care of yourself
  3. Be sure to relax
  4. Set goals for yourself
  5. Help somebody else out
  6. Take a different perspective
  7. Try new things
  8. Surround yourself with people who make you feel good
  9. Accept yourself
  10. Keep visual reminders of things that make you feel good

What is the meaning of self-esteem?

Each and every one of us have self-esteem. Self-esteem is made up of the thoughts we have about ourselves and plays a role in almost everything we do.

Having healthy self-esteem is really important as it helps you make positive choices in your everyday life, gives you the courage to be your own person, have good relationships and helps you deal with difficult situations.

Did you know that 87% of those who have been bullied felt it had a negative effect on their self-esteem…

Low self-esteem can have harmful effects on your mental health, your decisions about your appearance and ultimately, your future.

It’s not easy to like every part of the way you look, but getting stuck on negatives can really bring down your self-esteem.

Other effects of low self-esteem include:

  • You avoid difficult situations
  • Sensitive to criticism
  • Anxiety
  • Withdrawal from social situations
  • You are reluctant to trust yourself

It’s important to believe, deep down that you can change. Change doesn’t necessarily happen easily or quickly, but it can happen.

lion king, gif, change is good, not easy

Here are our top tips and the best ways to build and improve your self-esteem.

1. Challenge bad thoughts about yourself

Replace them with more positive thoughts which celebrate things you’re good at. You can do this by writing down a list of at least three things you do well.

Remember this list when you start feeling low, this will help bring yourself back to reality.

2. Take care of yourself

Eating well and exercising boosts endorphins, the body’s natural opiates, which make you feel good on the inside and stimulates a more positive mood.

When you exercise, you’ll ease stress and feel better about yourself. Having a cheesy dance in your bedroom, or going for a jog around the block are great ways to boost your self-esteem.

3. Relax

The constant feeling of stress can play a huge role in low self-esteem. It makes you feel negative thoughts more often, it reduces your confidence and you’ll probably feel too tired to exercise, be social or do a lot of the things you love.

Reducing your stress by taking time out to do something you find relaxing is a great starting point to making yourself feel better.

This can be anything from taking a bath, meditation, gaming, indoor dancing, singing… you name it; if it works for you, it works!

4. Set goals

Take the time every day to think about what you’d like to achieve. Then set yourself realistic goals for each day and keep track of your progress by writing down all your accomplishments.

This can be as simple as finishing off a piece of work or tidying up (and we all know how challenging this can be!)

You’ll feel an enormous sense of accomplishment when you’ve ticked off everything on your list for the day.

The trick is to not get bogged down by the list; some days you won’t manage to get it all done and that’s OK too! We all have off days, maybe make a shorter list for the next day and see how you get on?

5. Help someone out

This can be a friend, family member or even a classmate who is struggling with their work or having a tough time at school. You could give them some advice or just be there to listen to a problem.

It’s amazing how much our confidence is boosted when we do selfless things – do one thing a week to help someone else without expecting anything in return.

6. Take a different perspective

Look at tricky situations from alternative angles. Try to replace thoughts like ‘why should I bother?’ with ‘I won’t know unless I try’.

By looking at a situation through a more realistic lens you’ll realise that you actually can do what you want – you just need to apply a bit more positivity!

By doing this every time you have a negative thought, you’ll eventually default to this kind of positivity on the regular, and who doesn’t love a go-getter? Sometimes we just need to think and try different things to overcome having low self-esteem.

7. Try new things

Our brains are really good at learning new stuff and the more new stuff you learn, the better you get at learning it and the more likely you find things you can be passionate about.

Everyone needs a creative outlet; music, art, dance, games, sewing, cooking, web design – all you need to do is get on YouTube and find some tutorials. All the information you need is out there – it’s just waiting for you to watch it.

DM us on Instagram the best YouTube tutorial videos and let us know you were inspired by this article!


8. Surround yourself with people who make you feel good

Sometimes our friends don’t make us feel good, and that’s okay. You just need to spend your time with other people who appreciate and care about you more. This doesn’t even need to be your friends, but they could be family members, online friends or neighbours.

And those friends who aren’t helping your mood? Learn whether they are a toxic friend and think about trying to distance yourself from those people who make you feel bad about yourself.

It can be a little tricky at first, but even if they’re the most popular kid in school or the coolest person you know, it’s really not worth hanging out with them if they make you feel rubbish!

If you need help, we’ve written an article with 8 steps to help you break up with a toxic friend.

Strengthen friendships and relationships and you’ll most certainly feel better about things in the long run!

9. Accept yourself

Nobody is perfect. We all have issues and we all have flaws. Learn to accept your ‘flaws’ or imperfections and love them, because they are what make you unique. So, work it honey!

Self-acceptance is the key to feeling confident. When people pay you compliments, simply say ‘thanks’ rather than brushing them aside or countering them with a negative.

10. Keep visual reminders of things that make you feel good

Mementoes are a great way to see all the cool things you’ve been doing. How about making a ‘wall of fame’ in your bedroom with snaps of you and your friends?

We are living in an age where we have a camera in our pocket at all times…take more pictures!

Capture those memorable moments and when you look back at them, you’ll realise how many awesome things you’ve done this year!

Still not sure if you have low self-esteem?

It is completely normal to feel negative about yourself from time to time but if this feeling is long-lasting, then you may have low self-esteem.

Picking up on the signs is important so you can build your confidence back up to where it should be.

Take this easy to finish quiz to find out if you need a bit of a boost:

The link doesn’t work? Try the quiz here: https://www.qzzr.com/c/quiz/410901/hows-your-self-esteem


Need a lil’ boost to your confidence?

Join our community for anonymous answers from our digital mentors or other people going through similar issues as you. Let’s overcoming low self-esteem together!

Or hit us up in the Brag Box on Community and tell us one thing you’re proud of!


Self-Esteem & Confidence FAQs

What are three tips for improving your self-esteem?

Make sure to look after yourself, and find people who make you feel good and happy. Challenge any bad thoughts that come into your head. Understand the things triggering these bad thoughts and make changes to deal with them.

How do I build my confidence?

One of the ways to do this is to stop comparing yourself to other people, especially on social media apps like Instagram. Challenge your internal negative thoughts and try new things. Confidence will build from doing things just as much as learning about them.

What are the signs of low self-esteem?

You avoid difficult situations, you are more sensitive to criticism that normal, you feel more anxiety than normal, you are withdrawing from social situations and you feel reluctant to trust yourself.

So today is Transgender Day of Remembrance, which is a pretty big deal for trans people and allies all over the world. But why do we need this day? It can seem like there is a day for everything, but trust us, this is one of the most important ones out there. That’s why we put together this list of all the reasons why this is a day we all need, not just trans people, but all of us. 

1) Transphobia is still everywhere, especially online 

So we recently put our heads together with our friends over at Brandwatch and we put out a report about transphobia online. They analysed social media posts over three years and found some pretty nasty stuff going down. There were over 1.5 million of transphobic comments across all kinds of social media. That’s ridiculous. You can read our full report here

2) In fact, some are even inciting the murder and genocide of trans people online 

The same report found that there was a scale of online hate directed towards transgender people. It went from ‘acts of trans bias’ all the way up to inciting trans genocide. That’s horrendous. Plus, there was a whole bunch of anti-trans slurs used online. The most common slur we found was the term ‘tranny’ or ‘trannies’, which was cited 1.2 million times, and accounted for 80% of the abuse that we found. Other terms were ‘Shemale’ at 156,000 times, ‘Gender-bender’ at 56,000 times, ‘transtrender’ at 32,000 times, ‘chicks with dicks’ at 26,000 times, ‘Heshe’ at 18,000 times, ‘Ladyboy’ at 6,000, ‘Shehe’ at 3,000 times and ‘trap’ at 450 times. 

3) Trans people of colour are a specific target

Race was a huge motivator in the abuse, and trans women of colour were a huge target especially. There have also been some pretty high profile cases in the US of trans women of colour being the victims of violence. Literally because they are living as their selves. We know, it seems wild right? 

4) Trans people are still having their rights attacked in public spaces

Global politics are also a big motivator for anti-trans speech. Like when Trump was elected and inaugurated, there was a big spike in transphobic stuff going down online and in public. Things like the military ban on trans people in the US and Ricky Gervais’ new transphobic material are all quietly attacking the rights of trans people to live a normal life. 

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5) There is no safe space 

Pride was always a place where anyone in the LGBT+ space can protest, celebrate and remember those that lost their lives fighting for the rights and freedoms that LGBT+ people can enjoy today. But, London Pride in 2018 was hijacked by transphobic radical feminists, suggesting that trans issues made women’s issues less important. Pride was supposed to be a safe space for anyone who needed one, and even that was taken away. 

6) And it doesn’t look like any of this is going to change anytime soon

Our report found that not only is transphobia a huge issue online, but it also found that it is steadily growing. Transphobic violence is up as well. Unless we all join forces as allies against this kind of abuse, it isn’t going to change. 

7) We need to stop this from happening…

Transgender Day of Rememberance is all about remembering those that were victims of transphobic violence and murder, or those who took their own lives. We need to stop this from happening to more trans people across the globe. 

8) …Because EVERYONE has the basic human right to be who they are…

Every single person on the planet has the right to live their truth, no matter what gender they were assigned at birth and what name they choose when they are ready for a new one. They deserve to go through life unharassed, unattacked, and free from hate. 

9) … And we are ALL better than this.

If an alien came to the planet, what would they think about the way we treat this vulnerable portion of our population? They’d probably find it crazy that we would even dream of harming other human beings like this. We are all better than this, and we can always do more to be an ally. For some top tips on being a trans ally, read our article here

Been affected by transphobic hate? You can speak to one of our trained Digital Mentors here for confidential support and advice. 

We want to believe that we live in a society where the colour of someone’s skin does not mean they are treated differently. Unfortunately, this is not always the case and within our Annual Bullying Survey 2019 we learnt that one in ten people believed that they were bullied because of attitudes towards their race. 

We know that people of colour are disproportionately disadvantaged in society with oppression in the workplace and institutions such as schools and with authorities. This may be out of our hands, but what we can control is the language that we use and create a more inclusive space around us for everyone. 

Obviously, some racism is intentional and in your face. But there is another thing that people of colour are just plain fed up with: microaggressions. Microaggressions are subtle, regular, subconscious discriminations made towards marginalised groups that may not seem like a big deal on their own but together they are a recipe for causing offence. They can be pretty rubbish to hear all the time because it basically means that, despite it being 2019, a lot of stereotypes are still alive and kicking. 

Here are some of the top culprits for microaggressions you may not even realise you are saying:

1) “Your hair is so cool, can I touch it?”

Just because someone’s hair is different from your own, you should never pet them. Appreciate from afar like a work of art. 

2) “So when did you move here?”

Assuming someone wasn’t born in the country just because of the colour of their skin is not a good look. In the UK we are a cultural melting pot and you can still be British and be lots of different races.


3) “Where are you actually from?”

Same as above duh!?

4) “Wow! Your English is just so good”

This person could be a native speaker, they could speak 4 languages, you never know. 


5) “It’s weird, I’ve never really seen you as black.”

THIS. Is something a lot of black people are fed up of hearing. There is no right or wrong way to be black and you saying that you don’t see someone’s race makes them feel erased. 

6) “What kind of food do your people eat?”

…..We all love pizza bro.


7) “Hey, can you tell us what the Indian perspective is on this issue?”

It is not the responsibility of people of colour to speak for their entire race and educate you. We are all separate people with unique thoughts and feelings. 

8) “Wow, you really sound…different….than on the phone”

What were you expecting? The common rhetoric that people of colour all sound a certain way or use ebonics is so reductive. The way you talk is usually influenced by your family or your social group/ where you grew up.

9) “So is your Dad black and your Mum white?” 

So many people jump to thinking that mixed-race people all follow this formula in their genetic make-up. There are so many different variations of mixed race out there and assuming there is only one makes us all feel a bit crappy.

10) “That’s a weird name, its hard to pronounce is it okay if I call you Jim?”

A name is only weird to you because it’s not what you are used to. Learn someones name, learn how to say it, it will mean a lot to them and never just rename them to something you can pronounce! 


And finally…

11) Any variation of “Damn girl you are so sassy/fierce/strong/ *finger snap* you tell em sista!”

No…just no. 


Recognise any of these? 

Don’t worry if you were guilty of making one of these mistakes. A lot of us are. Remember lots of different micro-aggressions built up over time can become mega-aggressions. So have a look at our tips to help de-programme your unconscious bias and try to communicate with empathy. Finally just remember the number 1 rule – don’t be a dick! 

Not sure if you have unconscious bias, take our quiz to find out! 

Have you been affected by bullying? You can speak to one of pour trained Digital Mentors here for one-to-one support and advice.

Recent Ditch the Label research revealed that 69% of young people have witnessed somebody else being bullied, 43% of which see it at least once a week. With this in mind, we have compiled 7 things that you can do if you see someone being bullied. Here’s how you can be the one to help:

1. Ask if they are okay/if they need help

If it feels safe to do so, approach the person that is being bullied and ask them if they are okay or if they would like you to get help on their behalf. If it looks like the person is in danger, or at risk of serious harm, seek help immediately from a trusted adult, report it immediately to a teacher, or call the police on 999.

2. Do not join in or watch the bullying take place

Do not join in with the bullying that is taking place; think of the consequences of your words/actions and how they will negatively impact the person that is being attacked. Do not stand around and watch what is happening either; the attention may encourage the perpetrator to continue exhibiting such behaviour. Act swiftly, either seek help from a trusted adult or approach and focus your energy on the person that is being bullied (only if it feels safe to do so – see point 3 for reference).

3. Get the person that is being bullied away from the scenario 

Instead of focusing your energy on the person that is doing the bullying, focus on getting the person that is being bullied away from the scenario and to a safe space. If it feels safe to do so, ask the person being bullied to come with you. Once you are away from the perpetrator, focus on keeping them calm and reassure them that everything will be alright. Make sure that that they know they are in no way to blame for what is happening to them and that they can depend on you for support. From there you can both decide what is the best course of action to take.

4. Remember to keep calm

Often reacting in an aggressive manner can make the situation worse and can even put you at risk of physical harm. If you feel it is a safe and appropriate action to take, maybe try talking calmly to the person who is doing the bullying. Remember to challenge the behaviour, not the person – so instead of accusing the person of being a ‘bully’, calmly explain why their actions or words are causing the other person distress. For example, instead of saying “you’re upsetting them”, you could say “what you are saying/doing is upsetting them”. It might be appropriate to suggest that a teacher or responsible adult hosts a mediation between the two of them. A mediation can feel scary for those involved but is often incredibly powerful; it is essentially a face-to-face conversation between the person who is being bullied and the person doing the bullying in a controlled, equal environment.

5. After the event, ask them how you can help them

It is important that you don’t patronise the person that is experiencing bullying; make sure that they feel like the power is in their hands and that you will be there to support them every step of the way. A good way of doing this is to ask them how you can help them, or what steps they want to take next.

6. Be a friend

Your friendship could make all the difference to them right now. Spend time with them, make sure they know they are not alone and try to do things that will boost their self-esteem and confidence. It’s important that they still look after their health and maintain a good diet, exercise regime and things like meditation and yoga. It is also important that you remember to look after yourself as well and don’t take too much on.

7. Link them to Ditch the Label 

We are one of the largest anti-bullying charities and we are always here for those who have been impacted by bullying. If you or anyone you know needs help or a push in the right direction, please do not hesitate to get help in our Community here.

If you would prefer our easier to read version, please click here.

It’s 2019. We all know that being an ally is the only place to be for communities that are marginalised. But, being an ally is so much more than wearing a rainbow sequin skirt at Pride, or taking your mate to their first gay bar.

Yeah, that’s still pretty good, and probably a whole lot more than what would have gone down when your parents were young, but we can always do better. 

This Anti-Bullying Week we are taking you on a journey through your unconscious bias (and if you don’t know what that is you can find out here).

Turns out a big part of unconscious bias is a thing called a microaggression. That’s basically saying something that, in the grand scheme of insulting, isn’t actually that bad, but it can still be pretty rough to hear them all the time if you are gay. It also means that a lot of stereotypes are still alive and strong.

That’s why we have come up with a cheats guide to what not to say so you aren’t throwing microaggressions around the place like dirty socks on your mums clean carpet. 

1) “But you don’t seem gay”

This kind of implies that all LGB+ people fit a certain ‘type’ which of course they don’t. In the same way that every straight person has all the things that make up their personality and what they like and dislike, it is literally no different. 

2) “You can be my gay best friend”

Unless you earn somebody’s friendship, you don’t have any right to it, especially if that’s based purely on their sexuality. Get to know someone, and if it’s a friend who has come out to you, just think about the kind of pressure you are putting on them to behave a certain way. 

3) “I love gay people”

Urrrrrr cool. It’s great that you do, and that you want to be an ally, but people are a lot more than their sexuality. Love them for that stuff too. 

4) “That’s so gay”

No it’s not. Please stop. 

5) “Can’t you make up your mind?”

Reserved for bisexual people mostly, this one needs to be cancelled asap. Making your mind up has nothing to do with it. It’s not like we’re choosing between two different jumpers over here. 

6) “It’s just a phase”

Ugh. No. Nobody’s sexuality is a phase. End of sentence. 

7) “Prove it” 

No one is a performing monkey. Why don’t you prove you’re straight and see where it gets you? 

8) “You’re too pretty to be a lesbian.”

“I’m so sorry for the inconvenience caused to you by the fact that I am conventionally good looking and not into your gender” said no one ever.

9) “Who’s the man/woman in the relationship”

For real, in 2019 do we really need to keep comparing everything against heterosexual relationship roles? Not even that, but like super outdated ones. Guys can be sensitive, women can be powerful. Get with the times guys, because we are not here for this. 

10) “I know a gay person/my friends gay too”

“Oh do you? That’s great! I probably know them because ya know, we all have a secret club where we all congregate and discuss this shit”

11) “But won’t I get hit on in a gay bar?”

Dude for real? Just because you might hang out with people who happen to like your gender, it does not make you instantly irresistible.

12) “You’re just doing it for attention”

A huge amount of the attention that LGB+ people get is negative. Why would anyone want to put themselves in that position unless they were doing it so they can live like their true selves? 

Want to know what people think about LGBT+ issues today? You can read our Annual Bullying Survey in full here.

Need to talk to someone about your sexuality, bullying or anything that might be bothering you? You can speak to one of our trained Digital Mentors here for confidential support and advice.

So it can be pretty easy in 2019 to believe that gender stereotypes no longer exist. Hell, the women’s World Cup last year was the most successful it’s ever been, meanwhile Queer Eye is tearing up a storm on Netflix. So how can they still exist, right? When the world is looking pretty wonderfully gender fluid from where you’re standing? Well, we know that the planet still has a long way to go to get rid of gender stereotypes completely, which is why we threw together this list. 

1) That ad about the bad dads

Did you see that ad on telly where the dads get so distracted by how good their cream cheese is they actually leave their babies on a conveyor belt? Well, for one we aren’t sure cream cheese is ever that good, but it also raises a few questions about how we look at mums vs dads. Like, would a mum ever do that in an advert? Probably not. Plus it’s pretty rubbish because it assumes kids raised by a same sex male couple would basically be lost to dairy products within the first few years of their life. We love dads, and we know that they can be pretty damn incredible parents. 

2) All ads for washing up liquid or laundry stuff

On the flip side, tell us an ad you’ve seen for washing up liquid or laundry tablets that has a guy in it. We’ll wait. Yeah didn’t think you could get one. Basically every tv ad for these kind of household products still show a woman doing the job. And we’re all just over here like “it is not the 1950s anymore”. We aren’t saying that being a homemaker isn’t legit, our point is that women can be anything, and ads like that are much more likely to make little girls (rather little boys) feel like their only value is doing the laundry.

3) Speaking of kids, toys are a wild ride in gender stereotypes 

Remember when you were a kid and your parents would let you make out your birthday list from Amazon or the Argos catalogue. Well wherever you got your swag from, a hell of a lot of it would have been geared to you based on gender. Most “boy” toys are to do with war, violence, sports or traditionally “male” jobs. Things like laser guns, action dolls, football toys or playstation games are all geared towards boys being boys, and growing up to be men in the most traditional sense of the word. But what about the boys who like to play with makeup, enjoy art, or love animals?

4) In fact, a whole bunch of job roles are still pretty sexist

10/10 we would put money on your school crossing guard being a woman, or your bin men being exactly that – men. That’s because we grow up calling people lollipop ladies, bin men, postmen and milkmen. Even when you’re 12, your first ever job is probably influenced by which gender you are.

Nannies and babysitters are much more likely to be girls whereas those with paper rounds and doing odd jobs for cash are much more likely to be boys. Why? Because women and girls are supposed to be maternal and super in to childcare even from a really young age, and guys are supposed to be strong, athletic, handy and practical. 

5) Same goes for relationships 

Ever wondered why married women end up being a mrs, but guys get to be mr forever? Yeah that’s all to do with the outdated idea that a married woman becomes her husband’s property. Pronouns are a little more fluid today, and loads of women opt to be a ms, but it’s still a bit rogue that it still exists as even an option. 

6) Same-sex relationships also bear the brunt of it 

“Who wears the trousers?” “Who’s the man/woman in your relationship?” Yeah these are real questions that real people in same sex relationships get asked all the time. It’s pretty rubbish to be asked this kind of stuff as it basically completely ignores how far society has come, and implies that same sex relationships are not as valid as heterosexual ones because these roles are not fulfilled. The fact is, no one has to fulfill any of these roles in a relationship, because you can make your relationship into anything you want it to be, and that’s the real T. 


Basically, we think that it would be much better for everyone if gender stereotypes were cancelled. They put everyone into boxes that will never make them happy, and makes us all have to put up with a little more criticism and negativity in our daily lives.

The only way we are ever really going to bury them for good though is to keep living our best lives exactly however we want to, and the more we do that, the more the rest of society is just going to have to deal with it.

You do you, no matter who you are. We’ve definitely got your back. 


Have you been affected by bullying? You can speak to one of our trained Digital Mentors for confidential support and advice here.

We’ve all done it from time to time, sometimes more than a little often. Judging other people based on appearance alone can become second nature to most of us, even when we don’t mean it to. It can often come down to a thing we all have called unconscious bias, meaning our brains make snap judgements about people without us even noticing. What you might not know though, is that making snap judgements about other people based on their appearance is actually probably more down to how we feel about ourselves than anything else. That’s why we put together this list of 8 things you can do to stop judging others and feel better about yourself. 

Think you need to train away your unconscious bias? Click here

1) Recognise comparison 

We are pretty much always comparing ourselves to others. All day, every day. But especially when it comes to how we look. It’s the easiest way to compare right – without knowing anything about all the people you are sat near on the train, how they look is all the information you have on them to measure yourself against. The thing is, comparison is judgement, and it serves literally no other purpose but to make you feel bad or to put that negativity onto others. Stop it in its tracks next time you find yourself comparing by distracting yourself with something else to do, or humming your favourite song. Soon, you’ll break the habit. 

2) Practice giving others compliments

It’s definitely true that the more positivity you put into the universe, the more it comes back to you. So practice thinking nice things about other people. If you see someone walking down the street and you don’t like the way they look, stop your judgement in its tracks and think of a positive thing instead. Similarly, actually compliment friends and family – even tell a stranger something nice. The more you get used to being positive, the less likely you are to judge people. 

3) Practice giving yourself a compliment 

Just like we said above, the more you get used to being positive, the more you’ll just do it out of habit, and slowly stop judging. The thing is, you need to do this for you as well as everyone else. The kinder you are to yourself, the less likely you are to compare, and therefore the less likely you are to make judgements. 

So, for every compliment you give to someone else, give yourself one. It could be something like “I am clever and kind” “I am fun to be around” “I love my hair today” “my skin is looking great” or anything else that you need to hear. If you had someone in your life that said as many negative things to you as you probably say to yourself, you probably wouldn’t be keeping them around. So it’s time to get kinder. 

4) Clear out your social media

There’s a pretty simple rule to live by when it comes to social media. If you see something on your social media that makes you feel bad about your life, you appearance, your clothes or your body, unfollow them. Just like if you follow people and regularly judge them – whether they are people you used to know IRL or a celeb on IG, unfollow them too. If it doesn’t bring you joy, it’s not worth giving yourself the excuse to be negative or to compare yourself against them all the time. 

5) Or even take a break from it completely 

Even though we all love to scroll through IG, it definitely makes judging people part of our everyday lives, even when we are completely alone. Check out this list of ways you can take a break from social media. By putting a bit of a buffer between you and social media, you might find the amount of time you spend judging people drops pretty quickly, and you have plenty more time on your hands to do some stuff just for you. Win win. 

6) Take care of yourself 

It’s important that you take care of you. It can be easy to be super self critical, especially if you are trying to stop judging others. We are all our own worst enemies, and every time you find yourself making a snap judgement it can be pretty easy to beat yourself up about it. But, you are making real efforts to change, and that’s a big deal. Make sure you give yourself the space to breathe and the time you need to make these changes. 

7) Remember that not everyone’s the same and looking different is not a bad thing 

So it seems pretty obvious, but we judge people because they differ from us in some way. But the world would be a really stupidly boring place if we were all the same right? Humans are made to be different from each other, so people are meant to be fat, skinny, tall, short, of different races, ethnicities, genders and have different senses of style.

Have you been affected by bullying? You can talk to one of our trained Digital Mentors for confidential support and advice here.

Ever judged someone without meaning to, or maybe made a snap decision about someone before you’ve actually gotten to know them? Yeah, we thought so. That’s a thing called unconscious bias. It’s basically a big pot of all your experiences, opinions, media reports and things people might have told you about others. These all build up after a while, and mean we make judgements about other people based on things like race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexuality, appearance or background. 

Our Annual Bullying Survey (which you can read here) also found out that this is a huge reason why people bully. So, we figured that if we can tackle it, we can help to end bullying for good. That’s why we put together this handy guide to hacking your unconscious bias. 

1) Be aware that you have it 

So, here’s the thing about unconscious bias. The whole point is that you don’t know you have it. Confusing, right? And how are you supposed to help deal with something that you and everyone else in the world doesn’t actually acknowledge? Yeah, we don’t like to set ourselves easy tasks. The first step is being aware of your unconscious bias and where it might lie for you. Take our quiz here to find out. 

2) Reprogramme your thoughts

So, you’ve found out about unconscious bias, but now what? Thought reprogramming might sound like something out of Ex Machina, but it actually is a great way to stop yourself from judging others. So, next time you find yourself making snap judgements about people you don’t even know for whatever reason, try to reprogram that thought. 

Check yourself by turning that negative thought into a positive thought about them. So, something like 

“That guy is such a baby for crying like that” could be “being vulnerable can’t be easy, and it’s actually pretty brave to do that”

“That girl looks ridiculous” could be “she is really pretty” 

When we are run by negative thoughts and impressions of people, that becomes all we put out into the universe. Make some changes to your thought patterns and see what positivity you can put out there. Whether you believe in karma or not, it’s never a bad idea to be nice about somebody.

3) Think about why you feel that way 

We know it’s hard to look critically at why we feel a certain way. But there probably is a reason why you feel a certain way about someone before you know them. Whether that’s your parents’ opinions, a news report that said something negative about a certain group of people, or even just that you haven’t encountered much diversity in your life. 

If this is the case, try and expose yourself to different groups of people from different backgrounds. The more we’re around different people and get to know them, the harder it is to make judgements based on simple facts like skin colour, gender or sexuality. 

4) Think about your environment… 

Maybe you have a couple of pals or a family member who have pretty strong opinions on certain groups of people. Well this could really affect the way you look at the world. Sure, we all like to be independent and individual, but there is no denying that how others see the world affect our perception of it too. 

5) And make some changes to it if you feel like you have to

So, with that in mind, maybe think about doing something about it. We aren’t saying you should immediately break friends with anyone who has a negative opinion about anyone else, but there are things you can do. Try sitting down with them and ask them about why they feel that way, or show them this. Maybe it might be an opportunity for them to have a think about why they feel that way. 

6) Check other people if you feel like you can 

Kinda like what we said above, if someone in your life is saying a lot of negative stuff about other people for no good reason, call them out on it. Chances are, they don’t realise they have unconscious bias. Get them to do our quiz and see if they feel ready to make changes. Then, you can start your self-improvement journey together, which is pretty sweet. 

7) Spread the word

Yeah, unconscious bias is everywhere, and it’s a pretty big beast to try to defeat, especially when most people have no clue that they even have it. The thing is, we are not going to stop trying because we know it can have a direct impact on why people bully others. 

Get some of your pals involved, spread the word at your school and see if you can help tackle bullying by tackling unconscious bias. 

8) Everyone is different 

The world would be a pretty boring place if we were all the same, so inevitably you are going to meet people who are different to you. That doesn’t mean that they are in any way wrong, or deserve to be outcast. Especially if these people are in the minority, it’s important to remember that they should be included in society just as much as anyone else.

Think your unconscious bias might be making some decisions for you? Take our quiz to find out!

Hey guys, so did you know it’s Anti-Bullying Week this week? Well it is! And we have been working our socks off to research bullying all around the UK. This is the Annual Bullying Survey, and this year we’ve decided to do it on the theme of Pride and Prejudice. Basically, we wanted to look at all the reasons why people bully, including one thing called unconscious bias. 

Unconscious bias is something that we all have, and it means that we all have this little things in our head that make it easy to make snap judgements about people, based on our environment, the media, what our friends and family think, and just general opinions we have all formed in our past. This might mean we find it easier to judge people for being overweight, looking different to us, race, gender or ethnicity. 

Anyway, here’s a super speedy summary of the report. Also, before you read on – this blog post contains some stats that some people might find difficult to read. If at any time you feel like you need help, you can get one-to-one support from one of our trained Digital Mentors here.

You can read the full report here

 

Bullying Experiences

 

  • One fifth of young people have been a victim of bullying in the past year
  • 1 in 3 people witnessed bullying in the past year
  • Bullying has the biggest impact on people’s confidence – 86% said it had affected it
  • 45% of people have experienced depression as a result of bullying 
  • And 1 in 3 people have had suicidal thoughts as a direct result of bullying
  • Physical appearance is the number one reason why people bully
  • 69% of people have been bullied through verbal abuse in the past year
  •  62% were bullied by a classmate
  • But 72% of people did report bullying when they experienced it or saw it happen – which is awesome! 

But what about unconscious bias? 

 

  • When it comes to appearance bias, girls have a lot more – 31% felt strongly that unattractive people should make more of an effort with their appearance vs 18% of guys.
  • Guys find it harder to accept genders outside of men and women – 56% agree that people are either men or women vs 31% of girls
  • Guys also feel pressure to be strong and in control, but girls don’t feel that way about them – 20% agree vs 9% of girls
  • Equally, they also think it’s more important for women to be gentle and caring than girls actually do – 24% agree vs 16% of girls
  • About 1 in 5 agree that people from outside the UK should make an effort to adjust to our way of life and culture if they want to live here
  • And 3 in 4 think that people with physical disabilities are just as intelligent as those without.
  • Guys are more likely to feel uncomfortable around someone in a wheelchair
  • 1 in 10 think that sex change operations should be banned
  • And 9% think that LGB+ people use their sexual orientation to gain some sort of advantage in society

What do you think about our research? Leave a comment below and join in the conversation

Want to read on? Check out all our research here.

Have you been affected by any of the issues here? Reach out to the Ditch the Label Community here for one to one support from one of our trained Digital Mentors.