It sounds silly to announce it let alone explain why, but I recently decided to delete the Instagram app from my phone. I know, I know, get some real problems right? As much as my Instagram woes sound very much like a millennial first world problem, I think social media can negatively impact our daily lives and overall mental health and to me that’s a problem worth talking about.
I’ve been using Instagram as a marketing tool for Girl Party for years now. As a small businesses owner I’ve always felt pressure to stay engaged in social media in order to help keep my business thriving. Don’t get me wrong, Instagram has certainly helped Girl Party gain exposure and has introduced me to some really amazing people over the years. Plus I genuinely enjoy coming up with new content which also helps to keep me inspired. But regardless of the ways Instagram has positively impacted my small business, I can’t help but feel like it’s this void of nothingness that ultimately affects my well-being in a negative way. I find myself aimlessly scrolling at any given hour of the day for absolutely no reason at all. From laying in bed in the morning to waiting in line at the grocery store to sitting on the couch at night. Scrolling, scrolling, scrolling. Like I’m looking for something or waiting to see something that will make me feel a certain way, but in reality it just makes me feel anxious, unproductive, and generally emptier than before. I’ll feel guilty for wasting time scrolling, but then turn around and do it again. And then there’s the incessant checking for likes, comments, and messages. I find myself opening the app at the first chance my hands are free simply because I can, despite the fact that I just looked twenty minutes earlier.
I know I can’t be the only one who has encountered the social media blues at some point, especially as a small business owner.
I’ve gone back and forth about deleting the app or deleting my account altogether for a while now. I knew Instagram generally didn’t make me feel good, but I just couldn’t pull the trigger. I felt like I would be missing out in some way, or like Girl Party would suffer if I had less of a presence on social media. In recent months I’ve definitely gotten better about not checking my Instagram as often or overthinking posts that didn’t get as many likes as others, but I still felt that itch to open the app at the first sign of boredom. And I hated that. So here I am, deleting the Instagram app from my phone.
There’s a very real lack of boundary when you have social media at the touch of your fingertips, which is something I’m hoping to establish by deleting the app from my phone.
From here on out I’ll only use Instagram on my iPad during studio hours strictly to post Girl Party content. No more endless scrolling, no more opening my phone every ten minutes to check likes and comments, no more stories that I’m pretty sure no one actually cares about, and no more social media at night or on the weekends. Honestly I feel lighter and more focused just thinking about my freshly dumbed down smart phone. Maybe Instagram will bury me in its algorithm, but then again maybe that wouldn’t be such a bad thing after all.