A few days ago, I met with one of my buddies, an upcoming artiste, so we could catch up. As we were chatting, I noticed he was stressed. I asked him what was wrong and he opened up.
“I wish I was living large like these celebs I see on Instagram. Man, I feel like I am very talented yet I never blow up. The years are also moving fast. I am almost 30.”
“You’ll blow up eventually. No need to worry. Someone like 2 Chainz blew up when he was 35. Everyone has their own time” I tried to reassure him.
“But that’s America. In Kenya, you have to do it quickly. I just wanna have the weekly shows, the cars, the money and the girls screaming at me like kina Timmy. I wanna post a photo and get a 10,000 likes. I don’t want to have to beg people to listen to my music,” he pontificated with even more despondency.
I felt sad and tried to reassure him even more but he was inconsolable. He obviously had an extreme craving for fame, which is a bad thing, but I realized what the major other cause of his woes was.
It was Instagram.
You see, Instagram can be a fun place to view cool content, follow the lives of your friends and check out what the celebrities you love are up to. But if you’re not yet where you want to be in life, Instagram can trigger real depression in you.
HAPPINESS AND FUN
Everyone on the Facebook-owned social media platform always appears to be doing well and living their best lives. Some are in cool vacation spots, some are riding in expensive cars, some are hanging out in nice spots, some are always traveling and some are in amazing relationships.
When you log into IG, all you see is other people’s happiness and fun. And if your life is devoid of the same felicity and adventure, it begins to eat at you.
When you see that random person with their good-looking bae, you no longer have the ‘they are so adorable’ feeling. Instead, you have the ‘why don’t I have a bae like that?’ feeling.
You can’t help but wonder why your own life doesn’t compare to what you see online. You feel like the universe is being unfair to you. You end putting unnecessary pressure on yourself and when you feel like you are not making progress, depression follows.
So what should you do?
Sometimes it’s just better to stay away from Instagram if you are not doing well. You don’t really need to spend time scrolling through photos of people you hardly know and end up feeling crummy.
Spend time with real people that you care about instead of following a stranger who just bought a Mercedes and is filling your feed with its pictures.
Spend time chasing your dreams instead of being a spectator to other people’s success stories.
There’s also the option of only following people that you know personally. You are likely to be happy for a close friend who is posting lots of travel pictures as opposed to a stranger who is doing the same.
You could delete Instagram too if you are finding it hard to refrain from following other people’s lives. I know that if there was a dislike button on that sentence, Zuckerberg would press it. But remember, your well-being is the first priority.
I have a female friend who used to dream about the Vera Sidika kind of lifestyle and it would stress her out a lot. Eventually, she decided to delete her IG and just focus on her accounting career. Nowadays she’s a very happy woman. She even got engaged recently.
Don’t allow Instagram to give you pressure. You will eventually be successful and live the life you want to live if you put in the work. Everyone operates in their own time frame. Some are early bloomers, some are late bloomers. Your time will come.