Instagram should be a place for us to look at pretty pictures and videos and to relax, not feel anxious! But the reality for most of us is that just isn’t true all the time. It can cause us to compare ourselves negatively to others (because let’s face it, most of us will post the best of what’s going on to our feed), it can take up a lot of our time to engage with everyone (and if you’re following lots of people, it can get overwhelming) and something has to give in the end.
However, there are some things that we can do to help though and create only good places to hang out online.
Clean up the following list
When you first joined Instagram, you probably knew everyone you were following, you remembered instantly why you followed them, you knew what was going on in their lives, and you felt happy when a new post popped up on your (chronological…sigh) feed. If you’re following too many people though, it is easy to not remember any of these things, and you just end up scrolling and scrolling through to get to the people that you really care about.
Get rid of accounts that you don’t find interesting, ones that make you feel anxious, ones you followed because you felt like you had to follow. If it makes you feel rubbish, then drop it. Curate your feed to only show things that you love.
On the other side of this, if you notice that someone has unfollowed you, try not to take it personally. You can’t please everyone all the time and it’s important to remember that you probably didn’t do anything specific to annoy someone!
If you can’t unfollow, mute
The mute function on Instagram is so underrated. You might like to follow someone for their posts, but find them annoying on Stories (hey, who doesn’t follow someone like that?) or maybe you like their Stories but don’t really care about their posts (although Instagram does a pretty good job at hiding peoples posts without needing to resort to the mute feature…)
To mute someone, either force touch (on iOS) on their icon in the Stories section, tap the three little dots in the top right of their post or profile, and choose Mute. The following will pop up asking you what exactly you want to mute. If you don’t want to offend someone by unfollowing, then muting everything of theirs is a good move.
Something that James Nord recommends in one of our favourite podcasts, A Drink With James is to use the mute feature to hide the brands and contacts from blog collaborations then just check in on them once a month or so and drop some likes and comments on their posts.
Bring the positivity
It’s difficult, we know, to be positive online 24/7. Who hasn’t had a bit of a whinge about what’s going on or at a company for being rubbish? But if you’re always negative, people will notice and it can cause them to unfollow you. We’re not saying that you shouldn’t talk about what’s going wrong, but it can be helpful to look at the positive sides of things going on.
It can be overwhelming sometimes to scroll through your feed and realise that 90% of the posts are trying to sell something to you in some way, whether it’s with a sponsored post or using affiliate links such as Like To Know It. Having a feed like that can be great, but sometimes, you may want to mix in other accounts that help to educate you, perhaps in a skill you don’t have, learning about a different culture or maybe just lots of cute
The most important thing to remember is that Instagram (and any other social media platforms) should be a fun place to be – if it’s not fun, then don’t bother doing it anymore or change it up.