I started 2019 with a fresh view on things. I don’t know what happened, if it was the wave of the new year of a need of a new outlook but I knew something had to change about Instagram.
It can be such a pain to grow on there and I’m a bit ashamed to say I’ve had a few breakdowns over it. Numbers have taken such a big importance whether it’s for brands but as a way for people to evaluate the quality of the content, sometimes.
But I’ve decided to take a new approach. New year, new mindset.
Curating my following
This one an obvious first step for me. I realized during the Christmas break that opening Instagram and looking through my feed was tended to make me feel more bad than inspired. Creativity is a big part of me and I would compare people’s photos to mine and feel so down, worthless.
I want to look at my feed not like a chore, it should never be that, but at a place where creatives all share their passion for others to enjoy. So I went through all 300+ accounts that I was following and spent nearly and entire day unfollowing accounts that either made me feel bad about my content, about myself and that I was not that into anymore. I decided to just follow the accounts of people I love, people who inspire me and people whom I really am interested in seeing their work. And it made the biggest difference. Now I only see accounts that I thoroughly enjoy and it has had the biggest impact on my creativity levels.
Niche or no niche?
I haven’t been the most consistent Instagramer I have to say. I’ve changed the style of my photos so much that I sometimes didn’t know in which category I fell. But I’m sick and tired of trying to fit somewhere specific. I enjoy many things in life, whether it’s a good lifestyle post, a beauty shot, a gorgeous view or street, a beautiful style inspo shot. And I want my Instagram to reflect that, everything that I love and enjoy creating. So there will mostly be lifestyle photos I think, but I’ll always throw a little beauty post from time to time, or an outfit post, a pretty street or café and basically anything that tickles my fancy.
Time to up my game
I think the key to a good Insta account is also to showcase beautiful content. And that’s not necessarily what I was doing before. I love photography and really discovered how much I enjoy taking photos after I started using my sister’s new camera (thanks sis, always). I can spend hours taking photos and I make sure to take them in bulk when I feel inspired. In the past I’ve tried forcing myself to create photos and it just doesn’t work. My best photos come from when I feel super inspired and creative. That’s when I feel proud of my content, when I know my creative juices were the happiest.
Create, for you
It’s not always easy, but I try to make my Instagram account a place I’m proud of for me. For people to enjoy it but without looking for anything in return. I try not to check the “likes” number to much throughout the day but rather to feel good about the photo I posted.
I’m so bad at engaging it’s sad. It’s just that I feel so worthless like “who’s going to care about what little you have to say?”. The fact that my Instagram is so small also makes me feel very insecure. I don’t want to appear like I’m commenting because I want to draw attention to my account or because I want something it return.
But that’s just so silly. I am one to tell people when they look good, when their makeup is on point, when I love the way they’ve dressed, when I like their hairdo, so why not comment online to tell people that I’ve enjoyed something or to talk about an experience?
So I’ve started commenting more. At first, it gave me a bit of an anxiety, I would read again and again my message before posting it. Now, it’s more natural, whenever I feel strongly about a post, I’ll comment. Because creators need to know that what they’ve created is amazing. I’m all in for supporting one another, especially on such a competitive platform.
All these new changed have completely changed the game for me. I feel happier when I check my Instagram, inspired when I look through my feed, happy when I read the answer from a comment I’ve sent. My Instagram is still now growing much, whether that’s from the algorithm or people still playing the follow/unfollow game, I try not to think too much about it. I just make sure to focus on all the positive sides of my account. I have my ups and downs, but that’s life right?