Social media isn’t always a source of comfort, but a new trend spreading on Twitter is a heartwarming one.
Rapper Meek Mill started a challenge on Thursday that encourages others to share pictures demonstrating how believing in themselves got them through hard times. Seemingly inspired by his new song “Believe,” featuring Justin Timberlake, which dropped Feb. 7, Meek’s tweet urged followers to “post your progress no matter how far you came,” the Grammy-nominated artist said in his tweet, along with the #BelieveChallenge hashtag.
Meek Mill, who was born as Robert Rihmeek Williams, is also a criminal justice reform activist whose battles with the American justice system was explored in last summer’s Amazon Prime documentary series, Free Meek. That he has struggled for his own freedom makes it all the more emotional that so many people responded to the challenge with their own stories of making their dreams come true after a prison sentence.
From prison to a penthouse suite pic.twitter.com/YvQ9Z01lgN— 1090Aaron (@AaronBilzerian) February 13, 2020
Mark Morton, the guitarist for metal band Lamb of God, shared his progress from a kid with a guitar to playing in front of a massive live audience. DJ Showcase posted a similar tweet to highlight how far he has come in his success as an artist.
Musician J’mere shared a picture from a performance at his 2014 high school graduation, along with the time he opened for Cardi B last year.
The inspirational replies also extended to people who triumphed after struggling with medical issues, as well as athletes who never gave up on their dreams.
#believechallenge from 17, depressed, obese, and living an awful home life to 22 in this one winning an amateur Muay Thai title that would set me up to start my business that I currently run to this day at 25. First store opening later this year! pic.twitter.com/udef6SrpV3— JZ (@BicepGod) February 13, 2020
Philadelphia animal shelter Morris Animal Refuge shared stories of how some of their furry friends were nursed back to health.
#BelieveChallenge: poor Philly puppy Scooby was also in terrible shape when he came to us, but we weren’t giving up on this sweet little guy. He got lots of love, he got much better - and he got adopted! Just #Believe, and don’t give up. pic.twitter.com/8r6waHcYmE— Morris Animal Refuge 2020 (@MorrisAnimal) February 13, 2020
#BelieveChallenge: little four week old puppy Mutt-Mutt was rejected by his mom, starving, and badly injured. But we believed in him, found him a foster family to give him tons of TLC - and they ended up adopting him! 🐶 pic.twitter.com/g2HOmduqVf— Morris Animal Refuge 2020 (@MorrisAnimal) February 13, 2020
In addition to the earnest replies, some people had fun with the trend, with one user sharing a side-by-side of Cate Blanchett crying in Blue Jasmine juxtaposed with her holding the Oscar she won for the film in 2014. (True fans keep mental notes of these things.)