Sunday 7 October 2018

Living the instasham

Instagram. Ugh. The love hate relationship to END all love hate relationships. Too much? Nah I don’t think so. Let me just get started with a screenshot of something I tweeted the other week..

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or you don’t waste your time on social media like the rest of us sad acts, you’ll probably have seen that Instagram has been getting a lot of flak lately. Why? Well, if it’s not shit engagement then followers are dropping, and if it’s not followers dropping it’s countless comments about being an ambassador for a sunglasses company (where do I sign up!?). 

And that’s without even touching on the fake as fuck environment that has swallowed up such a vast proportion of our lives. Looking at posed photos, posing for photos, knowing it’s all fake but feeling the need to join in anyway. Reading posts about how Instagram is a sham and feeling inspired so posing for a selfie to write another caption to inspire others about the sham life we all needn’t be living. The endless cycle of calling bullshit on the world that is Instagram while continuing to live it with everyone else. Knowing it’s not good for you but not really being able to stop.. Sounds pretty similar to an addiction don’t ya think?

Using myself as an example, I will spend HOURS scrolling through Instagram to end up feeling just as squishy and chubby as I knew I would, and then worse than that start resenting girls who have perfectly tiny waists and toned abs when I don’t even know them at all! Then I feel guilty for being so horrible and thinking negatively about this stranger on the internet and just end up kind of wallowing in this waaaa I’m just not good enough pit of weirdness. 

BUT it doesn't stop there. We haven't even touched on the burning fire within that goes by the name of validation. You know in Finding Nemo when all those seagulls are going MINE, MINE over and over again? I imagine that Instagram is just a sea of faces going VALIDATE ME, VALIDATE ME, VALIDATE ME! But guess what? We all fucking do it! You telling me you’ve never deleted a picture because it didn’t have ‘enough’ likes? I actually get embarrassed if I don’t have many likes on my picture – genuine real life embarrassment based on how many likes a photo gets. How bad is that?!!

And that’s what I meant with my tweet. It does feel like a game, a game that we all know we’re trapped in but are all too scared to leave – me included! Because what happens if we leave? Will people start forgetting that we exist? What is life without our online persona that we have grown to love and in turn grown to hate? What will we be missing out on? WHAT WOULD IT FEEL LIKE TO HAVE MY LIFE BACK AGAIN. Ok you get the idea. But seriously, I’m just a big ol’ hypocrite as much as the next person because I haven't done it yet either. 

Another thing I wanted to touch on – especially if my manager is reading because I really want to keep my job lol hiya – is that social media for work/business purpose is a totally different ball game. While my blogging profile is diminishing the profile I run for work is absolutely thriving - better than it ever has done before. The images work, we get real followers, the interaction is great and it couldn’t be going better. So why is it different with our own profiles? Are we more critical when our ‘brand’ is not a product but is actually ourselves? Our own faces? Our own style? Our bodies? I think so. And it's hard to stand out because every one else in the world is busy posting their face/style/body hoping to get noticed too. At work I post images of sexy loudspeakers and people love them because they’re different and they’re something people haven’t seen before. Maybe that’s the key, maybe people are bored of selfies now. I know I am. I’ve started using Twitter so much more again because I love having an actual conversation and writing a thought down without having to attach it to a lame duckpout picture of my face. Maybe it’s just that authenticity people want back. Maybe we all wanna start talking to each other again and put the editing apps down for a while?

To conclude this rambling, I unsurprisingly don’t have a solution, and I am unsurprisingly still on Instagram. BUT I check it less and post way less than before and it’s just not taking up as much room in my brain anymore. God it feels good. Like it’s there when I want it but if I have nothing to post in a few days then so be it, I‘m not fannying around desperately trying to find filler content anymore because let's face it who actually fucking cares whether I post or not anyway? It was most likely only ever me. Yeah I’ll still use it but I’ll post when I want to post and if I get no likes then I’ll get a grip and realise I need to stop judging my life on how many flipping LIKES a post on a social network gets.. cuz let’s be real, likes mean NOTHING anyway, they are intangible and they shouldn’t even be a second thought in our minds.

OK wow lol I’mma stop writing now because I haven’t checked Instagram in at least 5 mins and my left eye is starting to twitch. But seriously, thank you if you got this far and PLEASE get in touch to tell me your thoughts.

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  1. So TRUE! It means to stay honest to yourself, not being mainstream - which means we all should post about what we are passioned about not to hunt thousands of thousands followers for just getting them and for the price to post more (mainstream) stuff we aren't maybe passioned about but get a lot likes because that's what destroys at the end the followers, as the profiles get like mirrors:/

  2. I have a love/hate relationship with Instagram, mostly love I will say. I have found that this year I've started to give less of a shit about what I post and it's worked in my favour! I've seen my following and enjoyment using the app grow. I've also unfollowed a lot of those who just post for the likes, I'm so over it! xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x