Begone Instagram!

I just need to share the relief I felt when I deleted Twitter and Instagram apps on my phone. The Facebook app has long been deleted and the only social app I have on my phone is Whatsapp and Messenger for communication purposes.

And no, I did not delete the accounts per se. To delete all the beautiful pictures I have posted on Instagram would be a betrayal to my love of photography. I don’t mind Twitter much — I would delete that account — but I feel like it might come in handy somehow. However, deleting the apps is a step towards productivity.

Consider this as an indefinite hiatus. I am determined to distinguish between my priorities and my distractions, and thus having less distraction and more work done. This was (and still is) a gradual process. I did not just decide to delete those apps out of the blue.

Last year, I felt that Twitter was such an unnecessary distraction. Scrolling became a past time. But then at one point, I felt restless and it just hit me that it’s actually pointless. So I deleted that and survived for about 6 months. I downloaded it again during the summer just because I had more free time. I found that I was less reliant on it.

I thought I could not stop posting photos on Instagram. I love taking pictures using my DSLR, showing them to people and receiving appreciation through ‘likes’. It felt good knowing that people did see what I had captured. And for me, there’s really no harm in sharing.

But I realised that I got addicted, not just posting photos but scrolling through the timeline until I reach the last photo I had seen, even if it was ‘9 hours ago’, and looking at other people’s seemingly amazing lives depicted in a static, digital photograph. I also felt the need to ‘like’ their photos in return for their kindness in ‘liking’ mine.

And then the university term starts and I got busy. I only posted photos about once a week, but I still had that addiction of scrolling through the timeline when I could be reading a novel or just catch an early sleep. I convinced myself that it was a way for me to take a short break from work. But it prolonged to 15 or even 30 minutes, and that is definitely not a short break.

Like in the case of Twitter, I felt restless. I knew I had a lot of work to do and a lot of materials to read, but yet I found myself scrolling through the timeline. It’s one thing to make it an excuse for a short break, but it’s another for it to be a form of procrastination. And it was obviously the latter for me.

So now with the apps gone, so does the obligation to ‘like’ photos or ‘retweet’ posts, and I restrain myself from logging on to Facebook on my laptop more than twice a day. Thus, I have more time to do the things I really need and want to do such as uni work, reading the book I started two weeks ago and writing (or in this case blogging). It’s been a tough journey trying to achieve this level of control and motivation but, praise be to God, I am on the road to maximum productivity.

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2 thoughts on “Begone Instagram!

  1. Great for you! It’s hard in this day and age to disconnect like that. I will say if you ever decide to go back to Instagram (since I love sharing my photos there as well) that you shouldn’t feel you have to go through your feed daily or multiple times a day. To be frank I almost never do that. I focus on my own account and if I lose followers because I don’t “like” them back enough, so be it. If someone comments on one of my pics often, I’ll occasionally make a special trip to their account and give them some IG love.

    1. Hi Deb! Thanks for your advice. I guess I just need a break from social media to get my bearings right. And I had never minded about the number of followers, but it’s just the curiosity to see what other people post that made me go through my feed daily, and that liking their pictures is simply common courtesy. But yes I hope I would have more control if I decide to go back to Instagram 🙂

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