The mental health charity YoungMinds has engaged over 19,000 people through a social media campaign encouraging the public to share pictures of themselves as five-year-olds.
YoungMinds launched the #5YearOldSelfie campaign on Thursday 8 August “to help young people going through a difficult time and encourage empathy, love and compassion towards themselves.”
It is encouraging people to post a photo of themselves aged five alongside three things they would tell their younger selves, and to urge their friends to do the same.
Since its launch the campaign has become a trending topic on Twitter in the UK, the US and in several other countries across the world.
More than 19,000 people have posted using the hashtag.
'Overwhelmed by support'
Tom Madders, campaigns director at YoungMinds, said: “We’re overwhelmed by how many people have posted their #5YearOldSelfie.
“The summer holidays can bring lots of new challenges for young people – including getting exam results – and the campaign aims to disrupt negative thought patterns or beliefs that people might hold about themselves.
“We hope it will help young people realise all the challenges they’ve overcome, as well as steps they might need to take in order to look after themselves.”
Emma Thomas, chief executive of YoungMinds, added that making better use of digital to deliver services was a key priority for the charity. She said: "Alongside our work on the ground, we will better use the insights, interactions and experiences of young people and their families to understand and respond to their needs. Through exploring new digital solutions, collaborations and partnerships we can develop further support and opportunities to meet these needs."
Here is a selection of the advice participants are giving their five year old selves. YoungMinds ambassadors Daniel Howell and Cathy Newman are among those who have taken part in the campaign.
This is my #5YearOldSelfie for @YoungMindsUK If I could tell my younger self three things it would be: 1) Don’t let the best be the enemy of the good. 2) Doubting yourself makes you better at empathising with others. 3) Convince yourself you’re good at something and you’ll soon pic.twitter.com/hkPml1SuhJ— Cathy Newman (@cathynewman) August 8, 2019
i literally peaked age five— Daniel Howell (@danielhowell) August 8, 2019
∙ cute, poised, sassy
∙ infectious happiness
∙ big imagination and an open heart pic.twitter.com/MH0aN5NXjf
To my #5YearOldSelfie— Anna Kennedy OBE (@AnnaKennedy1) August 9, 2019
1 You will always get there in the end you can achieve anything and never give up!
2 it's ok to have fun and always keep dancing.
3. Take one day at a time some days some some days not so good .....#FridayFeeling #FridayMotivation @YoungMindsUK pic.twitter.com/V4lAY56xiz
- you still enjoy dressing up, you now even get paid to do it sometimes— Jade Anouka (@JadeAnouka) August 9, 2019
- all that elaborate storytelling & showing off you’d get in trouble for will become your job
- don’t stress about grammar & spelling will become a poet & break all the rules!#5YearOldSelfie @YoungMindsUK pic.twitter.com/5UHotqHccP