A talk on Kawaii Culture
On this entry, I’ll be blogging about two special events that occurred last November (I know, i know, it’s a bit late too!) ~ I’ll also be sharing an overview of what I talked about on those days.
I was invited to be a guest speaker of these two talks hosted by two cool universities in the Philippines. In both events, I talked about my take on the Kawaii Culture. I was also encouraged to share my views, experiences, tips & insights about them, my own Kawaii lifestyle, fashion aesthetics and more(*´∀`*) This will be a heavy post so brace yourselves!
This is what Kawaii looks like @ Ateneo De Manila University
Kawaii Talk @ De La Salle University
Okay, phew. Here it goes!
So here’s a few slides from my presentation. Since the subjects were a bit far from each other and much lengthy, I’ll be focusing more on confidence for this entry. More details on Fashion & Blogging would be in a whole different post ♡
In the first part of my talk, I shared in details more on fashion. i.e. what my ultimate style was, where do I get my clothes, etc.
Even when i was a little girl, I honestly never liked getting boxed down into one style. I like having inspirations in a little bit of anything honestly, and create my own style along the way. With this, I would say my style is a mixture of those above and:
Larme-Kei, Aomoji-Kei, Soft Sister, Nymphet Fashion, Yume-Kawaii, & more
No preferred brands or stores either, I really like having broader choices. Looking for kawaii clothes is not as hard as people think! All you need is a keen eye, open mind and creativity and you’re good. No need to bring huge amounts of cash, thrift stores are great to shop in too!
In this section I talked about my blogging experience and some tips to start a blog. Here’s an overview of them:
Ready your objective. What do you want to do? A fashion blog, photography, kawaii, etc.
Find a Platform Find the right platform for yourself. Each platform has its differences, advantages and disadvantages. Blogger, Tumblr & WordPress are my recommendations.
Try to be a bit familiar with HTML/CSS People tend to avoid this but it’s actually pretty simple. It won’t bite! This is actually one of my favourite things about creating blogs(▰˘◡˘▰) There are a lot of websites that can help you with this. Google is your friend here! Once you’re good with that, you can look for themes that suit you best. There are thousands of cute themes that you can get for free.
Get inspired Inspiration can come anywhere, even on things you least expect. Learn from other bloggers Get inspired, but don’t blatantly copy or claim something as your own. Always give credit when needed.
Express Don’t be afraid to express yourself. Remember, this is your blog! If you’re doing a fashion blog, don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to shops or potential sponsors.
Keep doing it! Don’t give up! All bloggers start from here.
After all that, I then moved on to talk about my confidence story.
Now, I’ve always been really shy. Even more so before. I couldn’t speak up for myself and I’d rather let things pass me more than anything. I started blogging for real last year at one of the lower points of my life. Bad things kept happening all at once and it made me feel quite useless and unmoved.
However, one day, I just woke up and told myself that I didn’t want to stay like this. I wanted to step up my game and do something different.
So I told myself, “Why not?” and I did it. I begun making my own original blog posts. For fun, I had an idea to start photo shoot sessions with my cousin and did it consistently. I had so much fun because I like dressing up and I found out I really had a passion for what I was doing.
I loved it because as a shy girl, I may be a bit quiet and anxious but the way I dress has always been loud. With this, I wanted to show more of who I am through these pictures and texts. I did it more and more and stopped being conscious of what other people thought of it.
I blogged more and more each week. The more I did, the more I did it for myself, the more people liked it. And that was a really cool feeling.
Each and every nice message I received made me feel so thrilled and joyful that it just strived me to push on. I even got the confidence to approach & accept sponsors, and the world just grew bigger for me. My followers grew more and more. From thousands, to ten thousands, to thirty thousand people appreciating my blog, perhaps even who I was, and that meant a lot to me.
I know I’m still shy.
But at the same time I won’t make it take over me. Because I want to take a hold of my dreams, and a lot of those big dreams are out of my shell.
Instead of pointing fingers, blaming myself, sulking, I turned it all around. Instead of holding all these negative feelings, regrets, memories, thoughts, I wanted to try my best.
I knew I can do it and I did, and I was really proud of myself.
On the last part of my presentation, I asked the listeners a question I was really curious about. And I must tell you, people had such interesting answers!
Officially, we all know that “Kawaii” is a Japanese word that stands for “Cute”. However, nowadays, I feel like “Kawaii” can mean so much more than that. The word “Kawaii” can mean different things to different people around the world. It has become such a phenomenon, that it has already become a culture, a community and even a movement（*＾＾*) Here, I introduced the Philippines’ Kawaii Philippines with their official AVP:
It’s a super cute video and it really speaks a lot already of how Kawaii has evolved(*´∀`*)
I also talked about one of the frequently asked questions asked by Kawaii-enthusiasts everywhere.
“What makes a Kawaii Girl/Boy?”
“How do I become Kawaii?”
In this special slide, I quoted Ate Kaila (Rainbowholic), founder of Kawaii Philippines and personally one of my biggest role models(／。＼) I shared Rainbowholic’s blog entry entitled, “Who is Kawaii Girl?” . This post is one of my favourites, and I couldn’t rephrase her take on it in any other words!
And i couldn’t agree more.
Kawaii doesn’t necessarily have to be the physical aesthetics. You don’t have to be a Japanese model, or an internet sensation to be a Kawaii Girl/Boy. That’s the thing — Someone who is Kawaii radiates that joy and happiness from within. Just like what we feel when we see our favorite cute toys, like Hello Kitty or see anything cute. A Kawaii girl/boy would give off that happiness to someone. A person who brings people up, and not bring them down in any way at all. There was a point a year or two back where I wanted to leave the community because I was seeing how the kawaii community has warped itself into some kind of Beauty/Popular contest. I almost forgot why I started to love Kawaii in the first place. But then, I realised it over the years growing up too. That it’s not about that. Quoting Rainbowholic again:
“looking Kawaii” is different from “being Kawaii” … and everyday, I strive to become who I envision Kawaii Girl to be. Someone who isn’t shy about expressing her love for cuteness. Someone who is real and wholehearted in everything she does.
You can read her full post here ♡
With this, I realised Kawaii changed me. Not into someone else, or someone I shouldn’t be. Kawaii helps me everyday, turning me into a better me.
I ended the presentation I had with some tips that I go by（*＾＾*)
*abrupt end lol*
Now, on to the actual event~
Around the first week of November, I was invited by Toushin— one of the organizations of Ateneo De Manila University to be the guest speaker of their Kawaii Talk(o^^o)
To be frank with you, I’m not the most expressive communicator .. in fact, I’m really the opposite. I am ultimately shy, almost every word that come out of my mouth fall down and I stutter tremendously. I can’t get what I want to say straight. To top it off — Public Speaking is one of my biggest fears. There were occasions that I’d shake so much I forget what I’m going to say. I’d just suddenly burst into tears in the middle of my presentations. So why I did I agree to do this?
I wanted to give it a shot. I think in the back of my mind, I really wanted to take my stand. Even though everything else in the atoms of my body were holding me back, I still wanted it to be real.
I mean, the fact that a bunch of people find interest in my story, my thoughts, anything about me and this whole kawaii thing, I just felt that I needed to share something back in return.
In another way, I wanted to do this for me. I wanted to challenge myself. Am I gonna do it? Am i gonna chicken out and cry in the middle of the whole thing? oh my goodd who knows. But only I do. With this, I prepared, practiced, and most of all, just mean what i wanted to express. My boyfriend, Nikolai supported me all through out and it really helped.
“Just remember, only you know what you have to say. You can do it.”
And I did.
It may have not been 100% perfect, but I’ve learned so much from this. Every step I take out of my shell, my world gets a little bigger.
This experience was such a blast. Gosh everyone was very attentive and enthusiastic! This was my first talk, and in the back of my head I was really waiting for my moment of fall (omg drama queen right here), but i never did. It was wonderful. To have a lot of these cool people say they know me from the internet (wew;;;), and were pleased to have me there. Wow. They were amazing.
Thank you Toushin for this wonderful opportunity. I felt so welcomed. In a sense, you guys helped me grow, and helped me conquer my fear of public speaking in the process!
The next talk I got to do was hosted by Gakuen Anime Soshiki, an organization from De La Salle University.
Thank you GAS for such a fun experience! It was really cool having everyone here and learning from each other on what “Kawaii” means ♡ You’re all awesome!
I guess now I can say I finally did it — I really conquered my fear of public speaking. I did not have a breakdown at all these times, nor my anxiety & nervousness take a hold of me. Wow. Oh wow. I’ll be forever thankful.
I’m so happy to have been given this opportunity, thank you so much to everyone who came <3
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