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For Photographers, Personal

April 12, 2016

Why Taking A Break From Insta Has Been Good For My Soul…

Well kind of. It’s been a little over a week and I’m thisclose to just deleting the app from my phone for a while…

I’m taking a small hiatus from Instagram. You see, it used to be this fun platform for me. I looked forward to posting on it regularly and then before I knew it, it became this huge stressor for me. 

What was I going to post? Was it cohesive? Did it have good content? What if the “likes” didn’t reach 10 (which then became 20, then 60, then 80). Was my feed too cluttered? I needed to do a flat lay next but with what objects? Were the colors flowing nicely? Post then delete images to test if they worked or not. All day errrr day. 
It has consumed me (in not the healthy sort of way). I’ve worried, stressed, felt frustrated, ALL over silly little numbers. My following wasn’t growing at a rate I was happy with (especially when I felt I was doing everything right), I stared at my external hard drive analyzing, visualizing, and trying to figure out what image I would post next. & then came the captions. Don’t post images without good content. Fluff isn’t your friend. Micro blogging is something I’m trying to warm up to but as of now, I’m stepping back. 

Not sure when I’ll come back to posting regularly. I hope you won’t leave me. I’ll be back before wedding season kicks off fully but for now I’m going to re-charge, sever the oh so tied tight ties, and stop stressing over something so silly. 
Also considering a totally personal Instagram account (since we can toggle between accounts now) – I will keep you posted if that happens! <3

Unfortunately, I’m not missing it. Not one bit. There is just something so freeing about not being tethered to a social media platform. Not feeling the pressure to post in hopes of gaining a few more followers, or the rare possibility of leads. Truth be told, my business is based primarily on referrals and fortunately Instagram isn’t my make it or break it piece..

So much of our time is spent scrolling through the feeds of others. Living vicariously through those on a vacation, or those attending your dream workshop, or that perfectly stylized flat lay.. But do you truly exit out of Instagram (or any platform for that matter) always feeling uplifted, inspired, and fulfilled? I know I don’t. This obsession to have a curated feed has left out the messy, the mundane, the everyday ins and outs of life. Reading the uplifting words of others doesn’t necessarily add to my life. Yes, I enjoy (& love) reading what my industry friends have to say but I’m craving more. 

More living. Less scrolling. More sunshine. Less technology. More creativity. Less perfection.   

I’ve always been a perfectionist. I’ll never forget my 7th grade science teacher, Ms. Pala, keeping my DNA presentation for a future example. I spent hours on that project, perfecting every last piece (& I vividly remember crying because I couldn’t get the 3D DNA to lay just right) & I’ll never forget how I felt when she asked to keep it. In all actuality, I’ve been chasing that feeling since that day. Looking for that affirmation, that nod of approval, that fulfillment. That my hard work has paid off and a pat on the back for a job well done.

This all makes a full circle into my definition of success. As an entrepreneur you get to set your own bar, strive for it, hit it, and much like the “sit and reach” fitness test in elementary school.. You push that marker, sit back up, lean forward, and push again.. All in hopes of it being farther away from you then it was originally. 

So how does this all relate to Instagram (& social media in general) anyway? It’s hard to explain. Comparing numbers, likes, that internal struggle of feeling like you’re doing everything right & nothing is happening.. It’s all so loud in social media. It’s like those numbers directly correlate to your version of success, the curated Instagram feed with the perfectionist personality.. The best way to describe it is I feel like I’m climbing a 20 foot brick wall with success at the top and I’m scraping trying to work myself up it.

& that’s why I’m deciding on more living & less scrolling. 

Even if that living is defined by an evening walk with Otto & binge re-watching “The Office” (Swoon Pam & Jim).  

Oh, & I’ll still be writing here regularly. It’s good for my soul.