In 2015 I graduated from college. You can see this on my Instagram, but after that, my life became a mystery to many people. So what stopped me from posting on social media since 2015?
My anxiety to post got the best of me
I remember trying to put together a post and asking my roommate to check it 40 times to make it sound better. It could have been a picture of a steak we made for dinner or a smoothie from work that really didn’t need much thought. Something so simple stressed me out beyond belief. I was so worried about all the details that I stopped posting altogether. My anxiety about it got me so worked up that I found it easier to not share anything at all even if I really wanted to.
What I’ve learned since then: Looking back, the posts I spent forever on didn’t even show a glimpse into who I am. There wasn’t anything substantial that I shared or any groundbreaking advice I passed along. Sometimes what I get myself so caught up on isn’t as important or critical as I think. So in the future I hope to think less about the little things and put more heart into what truly matters to me.
I worried about judgment
There’s a certain pressure when doing things just to make content for other people. I started to change myself to fit into what other people liked or thought I should be doing, especially to get those likes. For most, you lose followers and wonder why it’s happening and what you can do differently to get more people to stick around. I never was around much for this to happen, but I felt the pressure to share things that I thought were ideal for others.
What I’ve learned since then: Without social media, I was able to focus more on what I wanted to be doing. A trip to Sedona to take hikes wasn’t done to get a picture over the natural arch. My trips to the national parks weren’t just for beautiful backdrops. I was living based on what I wanted to be doing and seeing without taking into account other people’s opinions. If I captured images, documented a memory, or created anything, it was because I was inspired or felt it at that moment. Keeping that mindset is critical moving forward.
My closest friends know how to get in touch
Social media was something I avoided in college. From posts that I didn’t ever want to see to what I regretfully shared, there was a lot that made me wish I wasn’t so present online. I never agreed to stop posting, but I realized that my close friends still talked to me and didn’t care if I posted the parties I went to. They still wanted to talk to me which made me realize I was posting for people who I barely knew. I was oversharing with people who didn’t care what I was doing.
What I’ve learned since then: I’ve been all about consuming on social media. I don’t post, comment, or meet new people. Although my closest friends don’t care if I post or not, it’s still a way to connect. It’s a way to connect with people I know and those who I am inspired by. It should be used as a way to build a community around the things you love and believe. I’ve learned that in order to really use it, I need to get out there and share more of what I love to see.
I wanted to consume and not share content
I love to learn new things, see beautiful pictures and feel inspired. The people I follow are all accounts that share ways to live well or think outside the box. To learn and feel motivated became my whole reason for getting lost on Instagram. I used Facebook for groups to learn about blogging or connect with nearby hikers. My goal was to always sit on the sidelines without getting involved.
What I’ve learned since then: While I may love to learn new things, there is a lot that I’ve been meaning to share as well. The ideas I love are oftentimes similar to the ones I have or goals that I’m striving for which means someone could be in the same spot in life that I am in right now. We can connect and relate. We can build a stronger community when everyone is engaged and involved which is why it’s time that I share.
Why does this matter?
If you’re like me, there are things that you get hung up on or doubt which prevents you from doing what you want. We can get caught up on what other people think or how perfect their life is compared to our own. Perfect is not a thing though and what people share with you might not always be the reality.
I want to connect with people that have different views and insights. I want content that dives into things that aren’t normally discussed. Everyone has a different perspective and what resonates with might not hit the same with other people. However, I want you to know I’m going to show up more because I know we can learn a lot from each other. I hope to see you on there :).