Why Instagram is Killing Me
I am not feeling myself lately. I am struggling right now. I am in the depths of my depression. So why would you care? You probably don't, unless you're my mom. But maybe there's something here you can learn. I can't blame it all on Instagram but it has played a major role in my slipping and now full on depression. And it's dumb. And I know it. And it's shallow. And that makes me feel all the worse. And I'm embarrassed to admit it. I know people will judge me. I know my mentor will say, I warned you. I told you so.
So here's the deal. I feel like I'm doing all I'm willing to do to grow my business through Instagram. The more followers, the more exposure, and hopefully the more clients. It also gives you what's called Social Proof if you have a strong following. Meaning you're a legitimate business and people know you and support you. It started being personal because I straight up asked my friends and family for support by emailing them asking for them to help me build my following. Some did and some didn't. Some of my best friends still don't have me take their pictures. I understand if it's someone you've always used or a close friend or family member, but that's not always the case.
Then I started following people that I knew hoping they'd follow back. Some did and some didn't. Then I started to obsess over those that didn't. There are still some people who don't follow me that it just kills me. I have cried more than I would like to admit because of people who I know who don't follow me on Instagram. IT'S SO STUPID!!! I know better! I take it extremely personal. When my logical brain says, maybe they don't know or realize its you. There might be some confusion between my business name being my full name and not what I go by. But part of me thinks they know and just don't like me. I hate when I think someone doesn't like me. I know that's dumb. I so wish I didn't care. And then I think, who is feeling this way because of me? So at first I was trying to follow my mentor's advice and only follow people who inspire and uplift me, and mostly other businesses. Then I can follow whoever I want on my personal account. But I didn't want to be the reason someone else was feeling sad so I try to follow everyone. I'm sorry if I'm not following you. It's not intentional or personal. Unless I've followed you, noticed you won't follow back, so I unfollowed you.
The other thing is that I see other people on Instagram that get their pictures done with someone other than me. Stab me in the heart. Again, I wish it didn't bother me but it does. Or I see other photographers on Instagram post pictures they took of people I know that I really wanted to work with but was too stupid to ask. I really wanted to work with a certain person. I still have a draft email saved from January asking her. Then I see someone else I know beat me to the punch. I wanted to be her friend in real life more. I just didn't want to seem desperate or make her think I am using her for self promotion. Now I'm kicking myself. She doesn't even follow me (which hurts the most). SO I have these feelings, then I hate myself for feeling them which then doubles the bad feelings.
Or I see people who started at the same time or after me and have SO many more followers. I know I shouldn't compare but again, I want to support others the way I want to be supported so I follow them and that means I see all their success too. And most days I am happy for them. But when I am down like this, I compare and feel jealous.
So maybe Instagram is not for me? Maybe I'm not strong enough for it. Most of the time I am. Right now, I'm not. So I think I am going to take a much needed break. Even though it kills me because I think it's going to hurt my numbers more to take a break. My mental health is more important. I'm still doing my business. You can still book with me! If anyone wanted to. But I am just going to take a break from social media for a while until I can get feeling better. And I might find I can function better without it and still have business without it. I'll let you know how it goes.
If you want to reach me, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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