I’m having trouble starting this blog! haha
Not because I don’t know what to write about but I feel the impulse to start it like a diary entry. So bear with me while I humor myself.
My brother came over today to pick up Aria (his dog) whom I selflessly took care of this weekend while he had fun in Hollywood Horror Nights with his friends. Even though I don’t miss having to keep track of a dog’s potty schedule, I enjoyed Aria’s company. She’s such a good girl.
My brother is five years younger than me but I’ve always seen him wiser beyond his years. He has lived on his own much longer than I have.
So before he left (but after we talked about how it was only 6 o’clock and it was already dark outside) I asked him “what did you do to get use to living on your own? Don’t you get lonely?”
He of course laughed at me and proceeded in listing all of the things he use to do when he first moved out on his own. He said that I could read books, I could watch a new series (because I just finished GoT lol) or I could, in his words, “go down the infinite hole of Instagram which is actually… pretty depressing.”
My response was, “you betcha!” Been there. Done that.
I’ve Tried It All
When it comes to Instagram, I’ve tried it all! I’ve deleted the app from my phone, I’ve put time limits on it, I’ve hidden it in random folders out of view at first glance… laugh at me! I know you’re laughing because you’ve probably tried it all too.
What’s with this app and its supernatural control over our lives?!
Here’s the thing, I’ve come to realize that there are moments when I totally overdue IG and there are moments when I’m simply not going to apologize for using it. Let’s start with those:
Moment #1: Using IG for my cause
Recently, somebody said something to me about my consistent Instagram posting that made me feel a little belittled. I am a blogger. Let me be transparent and tell you that I don’t blog with the intention of nobody reading my entries. I want to reach the last woman in the loneliest room with a hundred responsibilities and a thousand regrets and I want to let her know that I see her and that there’s hope.
So let me be loud and clear: I will not reach her, I will not find her, if I don’t promote myself on Instagram. If I don’t engage with other people, if I don’t share my life experiences, my daily journeys, where I hang out, what I do for fun, what I appreciate… then nobody is going to get to know me and my cause.
Are you using Instagram for a cause? Do you have a message to get out there? Do you sell something that you are passionate about? If so, I have one thing to tell you: DO. YOUR. THING.
When you’re at a restaurant and you want to selfie your food before eating it: do it!
When you’re on a road trip and you just reached a city limit and you want to ask the driver to slow down so you can snap a story of the welcome sign: do it!
When you put on your sneakers and take your bike out for a ride and you’re jamming to your favorite playlist so you feel the urge to share that moment with the world: DO IT!
Don’t apologize for letting people in. Don’t apologize for being social. Don’t apologize for sharing your cause and your passion with the world.
Moment #2: To celebrate my friends
I’m a sucker for celebrating my friend’s wins. I am like this today because for so long I let comparison rule in my heart. I never felt like my life was as interesting as theirs. I use to feel like my blessings were smaller compared to everyone else’s.
That was all a big fat lie. So one day I decided to change the story I told myself. I decided to replace jealousy for celebration and it has been one of the most liberating things that I have ever done.
So what’s the best way to stay connected with the life experiences of your friends? You guessed it… Instagram. Whenever there is something to be celebrated in your stories, I’m the friend that’s going to react and comment and DM.
I want to celebrate YOU! I am not going to apologize for that either.
When I overdo it though!
Yea, you know I’m not going to sit here and pretend I’ve got it all under control. Lol
When my brother left Sunday night I totally binge-scrolled! I think it was a good hour and something that I just surfed the IG like the real world didn’t exist.
I then proceeded to heat up dinner and watch half a movie (which I’ll probably finish today while grading science papers). Then washed my face and brushed my teeth and slipped into bed but not before taking one last scroll of the last stories of the night.
Ya’ll, I don’t do that every day. If I did, my life would probably be in pieces. But I do recognize that when I do that, a little bit of ungratefulness slips into my heart… and I think that’s the worst poison.
I strongly believe that there is one key ingredient needed to create a life we love. That ingredient is gratitude. Gratitude for what we have. Gratitude for what we will have. Sometimes, even gratitude for what we’ve lost.
Don’t apologize for being social… but also remember that there’s so much more to embrace in the real world. Your real life is not your IG feed. Create a REAL life you love.
Hey! I love you!
(no matter who you voted for)