After spending the whole month of March glued to my laptop in order to finish my master thesis (btw, I finished it! It just needs to be polished and edited but I have more time to do it), I’ve basically stopped existing online and I’ve only lurked around on social media (meaning Instagram because I use Twitter to share my writing and I check it twice a day from my laptop). I didn’t do a proper social media detox, I even ditched my own rule to not check Instagram during the weekend because I was so stressed and anxious and I needed to mindless scroll my feed to distract myself.
However, this sort of hiatus allowed me to think more about my Instagram approach and the purpose to use it for. If there is one thing I’ve learned is that without having a plan on how to use social media, it would be easier to just step into the old routine of oversharing and waste all my free time on the app. And speaking of oversharing, in March, I started feeling very uncomfortable with my old Instagram posts.
I’ve never shared anything too personal and, if I did it in the past, I would delete or archive the post right after publishing it. However, scrolling back to my very first photos, there were lots of posts that felt too personal to me and that I wasn’t comfortable about it anymore, especially now that family and friends follow me online. (Who’s missing the old days when the internet was our little secret place?)
It took me almost the whole month to decide but I’ve finally gone on and archived almost 2k photos on my Instagram. Almost 6 years of content. Let me tell you, it took me forever and it was painfully tedious! I’ve found a couple of apps that allow you to bulk delete posts or followers but they were all paid apps and, to be honest, I didn’t want to spend money on that. So, I went one by one manually and I managed to archive everything in a couple of days.
Instagram has been my photo diary since day one. The place where I shared my day-to-day life, my lifestyle staged photos and even some selfies. It was nice and I was happy about it until I realized that, most of the time, I was taking photos only to share them on Instagram not to cherish the moment and preserve it for later. Looking back at my Project Life pages from past years, I noticed a lot of staged photos I took for Instagram and that I included in my spreads because, otherwise, I wouldn’t have anything to add since my life is pretty much uneventful 90% of the time.
This is not how I want to document my life, remember my 20s, cultivate an online presence. I’ve decided to keep the mundane stuff off from my Instagram from now on and maybe share them occasionally on Stories and, hopefully, here on the blog where I have more control over them like we all used to do before social media. I was feeling so nostalgic the other day that I even toyed with the idea of creating an account on Flickr (now that’s free from Yahoo’s ownership), which is where we used to share photos before Instagram.
My current Instagram plan is to share timeless photos about nature because it’s my favorite thing to capture, photos of my cat because she’s too cute and (maybe) some journal pages now that I have some free time to get back into collaging. I’m so determined to stick with this plan that I even wrote in on Google Keep to have it handy.
For the first time, Spring actually feels like a new beginning to me!