Be warned…If you are not into Instagram (growth)… this may sound completely self-indulged.
you may wanna scroll right on past.
Since this past summer…I’ve been consistently dropping likes and losing followers on Instagram.
I share the story with my 1:1 clients.
How it once was…and how it is now.
I think it helps with perspective…especially when comparison is leading the brain.
Instagram today is not Instagram a few years…even a year ago.
If I’m honest… it feels a bit uncomfortable to share this publicly.
Thoughts in my Head (aka my monkey brain/ ego)
‘Are you sure you should share this? What about the instagrammers who are still growing strong. Obviously they are doing something better than you.’
Quiet…I’ve got this. Keep it real. Truth is powerful.
My story isn’t everyone’s …but I know it’s some of ours.
and…I do believe this is a conversation worth having.
This may sound like a fail….but…I’ve come to think of it as a WIN.
Creatively/emotionally (even)… this shift has helped me grow…and it feels good.
Enough ….on and on….Here goes.
In the fall of 2012, I decided to ‘up’ my Instagram game.
Commit …show up… be consistent…see where it would take me.
I planned and shared photos around still moments and stuck to it.
I started the hashtag #mystillsundaycompetition
The lovely community kindly jumped in to play each week.
It was a wonderful thing.
At that time I had a little under 3000 followers.
I believe the hashtag helped my following grow.
Over time….and several hashtags …
I decided to take a hashtag-feature break.
Maybe a mistake…but that’s ok.
‘Mistakes’ are opportunities to grow, consider, maybe even course correct.
(Sidenote, I’m thinking I may re-start the Sunday features for #mystillsundaycompetition again soon.
So please keep tagging.)
My account grew quite quickly from 2012 on….
(considering it was organic growth… no @instagram features etc)
just showing up and sharing consistently.
Fast Forward Summer 2017 | First up…Followers
This past summer…I noticed a decline in follower growth.
I used to gain 100 + daily… up to 1000 on the good days.
for the first time since 2012… I started to lose more than I gained.
At some point (maybe a day or 3) I hit 66K.
It’s been dropping since.
(even when I was away with John and not posting anything. 65.9, 65.8, 65.7, 65.6 and so no…)
A few months back I dropped to 65K then made it up to 65.2 (for a day or s0) then ….
A few days ago I dropped from 65.1 to 65K
Today…I opened insta…and poof 64.9
The drops (used to) bug me… a lot…
mess with my head … make me grumpy… stir up all kinds of self-doubt, comparison and insecurities…
Which seems insane… with all the other big real-life scary ‘stuff’ in my life.
(My husband has been through cancer, a leg amputation, we almost lost him several times.
and here I was… fretting over followers?
put like that… Yikes… what the heck?)
Thankfully I’ve been able to shift that crazy monkey-brain thinking…
I’m over it… (almost).
I focus on the art…making pretty pics and sharing inspo…despite the lack of likes or followers.
Today, I (almost) celebrate the dropping numbers.
Yes I still check for likes…and followers.
I doubt that will change…
but for the most part …it’s just numbers now.
About the Likes | AKA Double Taps
In the good old days I could get up to 400+ likes in the first few minutes after posting.
often 2000…even 5000+ …
These days… I’m lucky to get 400 in the first few hours…. 1500 on a good post.
If you leave the ego out of it… it’s fascinating to watch.
If you’re thinking…
It must be nice…I wish I could get that many likes…
remember….I have a significant # of followers.. so 1000/1500 likes isn’t so hot when you do the math. : )
Is this a reflection on what I’m sharing? my art?
Maybe … It’s not for everyone… that’s for sure.
But it has nothing to do with my value as a human…. a creative, a teacher or an artist.
It’s just a social number.
High numbers do not equal talent, success and definitely not dollars.
it kinda feels good…when someone unfollows.
Perfect..you’re not my people.
Thank you… for being true to you.
What I Don’t Do (Now)
I never check to see who unfollows me.
I did that for a brief beat…it completely messed with my head.
I follow who I want to follow and never check to see if they follow me back.
Now and then I check my stats and simply look at it as a fact… not a reflection of good or bad.
I genuinely find it fascinating.
That’s what works for me.
What I will Continue to do (not just for Instagram-sake)
Make art, try new things, make more art, do the best I can.
Show up…. share pretty pictures, truth, inspiring words.
Say thank you, engage…and give thanks for the platform that has pushed me to grow, evolve and consistently show up since 2012.
Could these changes… be a gift?
Might we discover…
there’s more to this than Insta- followers, and likes.
Are we working on our art for insta-sake…(only)
or for TRUE growth?
When it comes to growing…
Let’s never stop.
And so… that’s my insta-truth.
Perhaps it’ll help some feel better? maybe not…
I do know…it’s something I needed to share.
I invite you to share your truth (below) if you wish… I’d love to hear.
Have a beautiful week my lovely.