I deactivated my personal Instagram account for the foreseeable future.
You are not about to read another “social media is the devil” post…
but you are about to read a “Instagram is the devil” one.
Here’s the thing:
I love social media. I love my Louisiana gardening groups, my neighborhood group, my budget decorating group, and keeping up with people I wouldn’t otherwise be capable of easily keeping up with. I think social media is awesome…
But screw Instagram.
I’m over it and there are two reasons why. I’ll briefly get the first out of the way and done because it is very overstated.
It’s such a warped reality.
Almost nothing on there is real anymore. I unfollowed fitness inspiration (“fitspo”), Instagram influencer, and other toxic accounts a long time ago. They were so edited and staged that I rolled my eyes almost every time I saw a post, yet I can admit there was a small part of me that wished my home, waist, and car looked like it. So, I unfollowed it all. Simple.
But wait, there’s more (imagine an infomercial gif here because I can’t legally insert it):
Now EVERYONE edits pictures. Teeth are bright white in dark rooms, noses are almost completely blurred out, and the sky looks green.
Girl where is your nose?!
I’m over it. It’s ridiculous and I’m tired of telling the smaller part of me that wants to do it, too, to stay in her corner.
Now, here is the main reason I left the platform:
It’s information overload.
As I already said, I mostly followed friends and informative accounts on Instagram. There is an overwhelming amount of free information on Instagram. Informative accounts on the platform lead me to great books, podcasts, and blogs about topics I cared about: Personal finance, single parenting, mental health, physical health, etc.
Instagram stories and the beautifully laid out infographics are crack to a Type A, like me. Everything was so aesthetically pleasing and I couldn’t stop scrolling. I was constantly reading, learning, and adding new books to my “need to read” list. Recently, I realized how constantly overstimulated I was feeling. I monitored my actions for a few weeks and realized that my “healthy” relationship with Instagram was actually burning me out. After all, it’s not the same as Googling the answer to a question. On Instagram (and dare I say TikTok), you’re getting the information you didn’t even know you wanted.
One of my friends treats the platform the same way I did. She would constantly send me car seat safety tips, health advice from certified dieticians, and tons of other helpful things. I asked her opinion on the matter. She completely agreed and described what she was experiencing as “drowning in information.”
Sure, I was learning new things, but what was the trade-off on time and mental energy?
That being said, we are all different.
After speaking to a few people, I found that more people felt they had a good relationship with Instagram, but thought Facebook was the monster. They told me the political world on Facebook was becoming too much to take on.
I completely understand that. I’ve unfollowed (not unfriended) many people I care about on Facebook because I was beginning to look at them differently based on what they were posting, which is not okay. My Facebook timeline now consists of realistic pictures of my friends and family. My daily activity involves scrolling three or four times on my timeline, then checking in with all of my fun groups.
I know everyone is different. Hopefully, this will give you some foundation to reflect on how social media in its various forms is affecting you.