In some ways it’s a bit ridiculous, the way I talk about Instagram more since deleting my account. I suppose it’s similar to paying more attention to material items when taking the road to minimalism town.
But I do think this whole social media thing should be blogged about, just once more. Mainly because I still have thoughts about it, and I want this blog to be one of honesty.
So, if I’m being honest: I redownloaded Instagram about a week ago.
Though this is where I bring in another perspective; that of not having a personal account, but a business one. Well, if you can call it a business.
A friend and I create and sell zines online, and we share updates and behind the scenes on a shared Instagram account made specifically for our zine. With our second edition coming out this week, we decided to post a picture every day (for the last eight days) to get the word out. It creates hype and gives people a chance to know about the zine. So every second day for the past week I’ve been uploading a photo onto Instagram.
Keeping in mind what I’ve said in my previous Instagram posts, here’s what’s helping me ‘keep in line’:
1/ Turned off notifications.
This has had the biggest impact, more than I would have thought. By turning off the Instagram notifications, I can’t see when someone likes or comments on a photo. Because I’m not constantly being reminded of Instagram throughout the day by the notification sound and my phone screen lighting up, I don’t check the app. I think each time I used to get a notification, I would go onto Instagram and have a good scroll. But because my eyes aren’t drawn to my phone by the notification, I don’t think to go on Instagram except when it’s my turn to post a photo.
2/ Followed accounts.
This is also a big one. Because this is a ‘business’ account, we’re only following a handful of other accounts, and these consist of local businesses and independent artists. Because I don’t know these people personally, I don’t feel the need to check the app “in case someone posts something interesting”. There’s something to be said for wanting to know what’s happening in other people’s lives; I keep telling myself that if I have to know something, I will. If I don’t, the person isn’t going to notice whether I like or comment on their post. So without the personal factor, I’m much less drawn to checking new posts.
3/ Phone folders.
On smart phones you can create folders for apps. I have one folder titled “unused”, which holds the annoying apps you can’t delete (like ‘health’ – campers, I am never going to use this). You bet your bottom dollar I’ve moved Instagram into this folder, which means the Instagram app isn’t in my face as soon as I turn my phone on. By placing the app out of sight, and into a folder I never click on, I’m not being taunted by the Instagram logo.
After talking about social media several times, and making my strong feelings known, it does seem silly that I’m posting on Instagram every other day. But after a month without it, I don’t have the same tendency to reach for it absentmindedly. If I have a spare moment, my phone isn’t my automatic reaction.
I’ve redownloaded Instagram in the name of business, and whilst I can’t help but wonder if this makes me a hypocrite, I don’t know what the answer is.