After reading The Compound Effect - it really motivated me to take a look at practices that I wanted to start implementing as well as get rid of in my life. So I’ve decided that I’m going to make this a series! You can see the first challenge on meditation here.
Get more Instagram discipline, set some intentions, and get some overall strategy… Essentially have more control over my use as oppose to it having control over me!
Why that challenge
I love Instagram. I’ve connected with so many amazing people because of it. Some of my dearest friends and some of my most successful partnerships were through the platform. I’m not wanting to get rid of it, but I found that I would spend a lot of time on it that I didn’t plan on. One night I found myself scrolling through 45-minutes of nature videos - and although that’s probably more uplifting than drooling over lifestyle influencers which inevitably leaves me feeling “less than” for how dingy my rental kitchen is, I didn’t plan on spending my evening that way. And that’s how they get you. The incessant scrolling and the algorithm giving you more and more and more without you even clicking, swiping and asking for it!
Not to mention all the studies around mental health. Instagram is apparently the worst app for your mental health, and should they pay a levy for damages? Ultimately, I just don’t want to go to rehab.
Just kidding, kind of.
What I was currently doing
Checking it first thing in the morning and on and off during the day. Typically when I was bored, there was a lull between tasks, traveling or really any time of day.
I was already deleting the app off my phone on Friday night and downloading it again Monday morning to prevent me from checking it while I was with my family on the weekends. Which was great.
What I did
Not check it in the mornings.
Go into instagram with a task
Have a time limit
Stop posting on Friday’s and delete it Thursday night
Benefits I started seeing
So many, but here are a few:
My mornings are a lot more calm and productive
That’s also due to my meditation practice which I did at the same time as this one.
I’ve developed a more thoughtful strategy
I’m really trying to make Instagram work for me more. I implement the “3 gives and 1 ask” in my stories and in my posts. It’s really helpful.
I also wanted to set some time limits so I’ve given myself 25 minutes and broke it down like this:
10 min - posting: post + stories
10 min - responding, DM’s, notifications
5 min - thoughtful comments + interaction (look for people who aren’t necessarily popping up in the algorithm but that I want to check up on, ex. past and current clients)
More time in my day, week, year!
I decided to not post on Friday’s anymore and delete the app off my phone Thursday night and re-upload it Monday. When I realized that gave me at least 1-hour a week back (between planning, scheduling, posting and interacting on the platform) which equaled 52 hours a year, I felt like a real boss.
Have I continued
Yes! It’s a daily challenge and I’ve been trying to download the new software that allows you to set time limits on the app and not be able to access it (my phone is being weird with the new software and not letting me download it) which is so awesome. I think that would help me even more.
I unintentionally went on a 10 day detox and actually got people emailing me and asking if I was okay (which is so nice). But not having my thumb click that icon was a refreshing recalibration of my brain.
Social media relationships are a complicated one. I love all the friends I have on there and I truly feel like they are friends, but man oh man - it can really consume me if I’m not careful, that dopamine hit is real. But continuing to suss out what’s working, what’s effective and what’s not. I’ve found that interaction on my DM’s feels the most meaningful and beneficial, right now at least!
I’ll probably do a social media detox once a year and see how I can better improve my relationship/interaction!
Would love to hear your thoughts on social media! What’s working for you, what’s not. Do you detox? Do you feel you have control over it? Give it to me.