I’ve spoken before about how I’m a bit of an addict when it comes to the old ‘gram, desperate for my next fix. And that hasn’t changed at all, if anything I become a bit more obsessed with it by the day.
Yes, it has its faults. I spend way too much time on it, I am forever irritated by the fact that I don’t have as many followers as others. That I don’t seem to have a hold of that elusive formula on what makes people click “like” (I can get 100+ likes on one photo and then struggle to limp to 30 on the next). That people I know - and like - unfollow me. That people I only know through Instagram - but like- unfollow me. I hate spam comments that make no sense. I hate that I know no matter what I do my pictures will never look as good as some of my favourite Instagrammers. (That’s despite knowing that comparison is the thief of joy, and that I should never compare myself to a stranger on Instagram etc etc. I’m not saying I want their lives. I just want their ability to pose, their outfits, their Peggy Porschen-esque settings and their figures, okay???)
But then . . . myself and the fella were talking about the ‘gram (I totally call it that now btw, we’re old pals), and I came to a strange realisation: can Instagram, in some ways, make you a better person?
I know it might not make sense to some . . . but if I wasn’t in love with Instagram, I’d probably spend most of my weekends slobbing out in front of the telly, eating junk, in my PJs. Don’t get me wrong, I still do this some times . . . but my motivation to get up, out and about is partly prompted by Insta.
People talk about “doing it for the ‘gram” and I think there’s a lot of truth to this.
Here’s why I believe Instagram has improved me:
Firstly, it helped me to become a more confident cook and experiment more with food. Seeing other people’s food photos inspired me to try new things and, while I don’t post as many food pics as I used to, I did used to love posting the food I created to see reactions and likes. Kind of related, it also helped me at times stay accountable for my health, as I would post lots of pictures of healthy food, or my Polar watch showing how many calories I burned. I actually made a separate fitness account to keep track of that . . . I just need to start using it more often! When I do manage to get into a health kick, I find that Instagram account does inspire me to some extent, as does looking at other people’s accounts who are on similar journeys.
On a similar vein, the fella is a big runner and likes to post collages featuring his map from Mapmyrun along with some pictures taken along his run. Sometimes when he can’t be bothered doing a run, knowing he can make a post like this after he runs motivates him to actually go and do it . . . even when we’re on holiday. Because, let’s face it, he’s going to get a completely different set of photos on holiday than he will back home, and therefore the motivation is increased tenfold.
I get out and about a lot more. I see all these people posting pics with amazing backgrounds and okay, I might not be able to rival a lot of these settings . . . but I have Scotland, don’t I? And Scotland is bloomin’ amazing so I make it my aim to showcase it on Insta as much as I can. Last weekend it was Ardnarmurchan and Glen Coe and Fort William . . . this coming weekend it’s a variety of castles. We’re always searching for “instagrammable” places . . . so if you know of any more in Scotland that I’ve missed out please let me know!
And of course I want a bit of variety in my pics so sometimes I want to be in front of the camera in front of these settings . . . and I want to look nice while doing so, so I actually make an effort (most of the time anyway) when I go on these visits so I look vaguely presentable in front of the camera.
I feel like it makes me more creative as I’m always trying to think of a new or unusual way to take a photo, or props I can use to do so. Okay sometimes it involves me wearing a pair of kids unicorn ears from Poundland that turns out to look worrying phallic, taking a cloud shaped light to a remote beach on a Scottish peninsula, or throwing a bunch of balloons around a hotel room while pretending to swig from an empty bottle of cava, but the end result can be sort of fun . . . and the outtakes hilarious.
Once I even agreed to go to a giant adult ball pond because I knew I’d get some great pics and Instagram stories from it. Well, there was also Prosecco and my friends there, so the pics for the ‘gram were just an added bonus to be fair.
So all in all I definitely think that Instagram has (mostly) made me a better person! Even if I AM always looking for my best Instagram pic fix!
How about you?