Hi I’m Helen and I’m an Instagram addict!
I first downloaded Instagram in 2012 and I was hooked. Nearly 7 years later I find myself lost in this not-so-little app. For me it’s a creative outlet. A window into the unknown. I spend hours a week scrolling through my feed, liking photos, following new people, exploring hashtags, and generally taking it all in. Taking it in way too much & taking it way to personally. I find myself constantly checking my phone for new likes, comments and followers.
I’m an addict. I need more! I need another insta-hit.
I can spend hours creating content for only a mere 10% of my following to see it. F**K YOU ALGORITHM. That makes me sad, anxious and flipping annoyed. If a photo isn’t performing as well as I would have hoped then I archive it and don’t even get me started on the follow/unfollow game!
As with all social media, INSTAGRAM is an addiction. An unhealthy one.
- When you wake up in the morning is the very first thing you do, even before you’ve said good morning to your partner, is check Instagram?
- Do you stress about getting an ‘insta perfect’ picture on your white Olympus PEN because a candid blurry iPhone snapshot isn’t good enough for the ‘gram?
- Can you be in a social situation and not interact with your phone?
- Do you turn on the TV only to find that the programme you’ve been ‘watching’ for the past hour is over and you haven’t got the foggiest idea what has happened because you have been fixated on your phone?
- Do you take your phone to the toilet / bath / dinner table?
- Do you insta story the shit out of everything?
- Do you buy outfits based on what you have seen on Instagram?
- Do you have the mindset of ‘if it’s not on Instagram it didn’t happen’?
- Does your coffee go cold because you have been flat laying your little heart out?
- Do you no longer care that lining up the perfect shot makes you look stupid?
- Do you take every single photo with the square crop in mind?
If you answer YES to any of the above then YOU my friend are an INSTAGRAM ADDICT!
Surely this screen time is not good for our mental health? The Independent reported that our reliance on social media can have a detrimental effect on our mental health, with the average Brit checking their phone as much 28 times a day. 28 times! What would you do if the Instagram servers went offline never to return? Would you panic? Have a full blown melt down? Cry? Or sigh a huge sigh of relief as you realise how you have wasted 7 years of your life and many many 02 bolt ons!
Don’t get me wrong Instagram has opened up many opportunities for me and many real life friendships have been born BUT I need to sit back and put it all into perspective. So what if my photo hasn’t performed as well as I had liked! It’s not a popularity contest! It’s an App! More importantly a FREE app!
What can I do to curb this insta-addiction?
There’s no magic patch and I’m not ready to go cold turkey just yet! Plus it doesn’t help that social media is part of my real life job! My resolutions for 2019 are to limit phone time at home or even better stick my phone in another room and forget about it. I’m going to actually watch Ru Pauls’ Drag Race and not have it on in the background. Baths are now for books and relaxation. Not for scrolling. Bedtime is now for books. Not for scrolling. On my lunch break I will focus on getting out of the office, being active and breathing in some fresh air. It’s not sitting back on my desk with my Greggs steak bake and you guessed it….scrolling.
Do you feel you are addicted to Instagram? Have you gone cold turkey? Drop me a comment below! I’d love to know that I am not alone!