Habits life

Instagram (Deleted)

November 10, 2021

I did delete Instagram from my phone the other day, after my rant here. I had to reinstall it to do my weekly podcast post, but promptly deleted it again. I also checked in on my laptop yesterday to respond to comments.

This is definitely an improvement from having the app readily accessible. I am considering downloading Later to avoid having to install/delete every time (the free plan appears to have more than enough for my needs). But I’m also considering not posting on Insta at all.

THE HORROR, right? So subversive, and probably would slow down downloads/podcast growth at least to some extent (perhaps small).

But, I am asking myself deeper questions like – WHAT IS THE POINT OF CARING ABOUT GROWTH ANYWAY? I enjoy making BLP, and talking about the topics on the show. It gives me a fun excuse to try out new planners (though sometimes I do feel burdened by posting certain requested reviews, if I’m not that excited about the product). I don’t really earn anything from it — perhaps I’m at the point of being ‘cost neutral’ from ad sales.

And maybe my content will be better and/or more original if I’m not spending too much time scrolling.

I keep reminding myself that this is the only life I get to do what I want with it. I know regular social media use does not make me happy. So maybe I’ll just take another longer Insta-break and see how it goes.



  • Reply Mrs. Candid November 10, 2021 at 6:08 am

    I think you already have a distinguished presence, through your blog, BOBW and BLP. So, I feel your podcast growth won’t slow down because of deleting Instagram.
    Cheers 😃

    • Reply Amanda November 10, 2021 at 9:01 am

      I agree! Think of it this way: potential listeners who are not already following/listening to BOBW and BLP are probably finding you from other podcasters who mention your show, are guests (and vice versa), and their social media channels, not because they are scrolling IG.

  • Reply Omdg November 10, 2021 at 7:02 am

    I regularly take care of middle schoolers and teenagers with significant mental health issues and suicidality derived from social media. It’s poison intended to make you feel bad about yourself so you change your behavior and buy things.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger November 10, 2021 at 7:29 am

      Yes very true and it’s not like I want my kids on it.

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns November 10, 2021 at 7:20 am

    I don’t ever hear about podcasts through IG! So from my view, you don’t really need to use that channel to grow your business. That said, I’ve never bought something from an IG ad and don’t even notice them! So I am probably not representative of the IG audience. But I learn about podcasts when they are mentioned on other podcasts or more so from word of mouth. So don’t feel like you HAVE to be on IG. It seems like it doesn’t add to your life! I’ve questioned leaving, too, but I would miss seeing pics of my niece. I will be taking December off, though, after our sons bday on the 3rd. I like to take 2 IG breaks/year.

  • Reply Kate November 10, 2021 at 7:20 am

    Solidarity! I deleted it earlier this fall. Suddenly I had time to read an extra 3-4 books per month! I check it maybe weekly on my laptop, and I’m so much happier that way.

  • Reply Shelly November 10, 2021 at 7:50 am

    I’m in the process of starting my own business and part of marketing was discussing instagram, facebook, and twitter. Texting as well as a way to reach people. I find it all so exhausting and I have really been dreading that part. I had already been considering doing old fashioned connecting with people in person and finding other ways to connect. I think this conversation is confirming that.
    My son started middle school this year. He is one of very few if any other kids who don’t have a phone. When they are given time each morning for half an hour to do an activity of their choice, my son reads because he doesn’t like some of the other options. Most kids are on their phones. It’s frustrating. That’s grade six. The school also had to send a letter to parents about kids bullying and abusive posts. (Grades 6 to 8). It is so disheartening. I’m with @omdg in that I am starting to see it as mostly poison.

    • Reply Grateful Kae November 10, 2021 at 8:11 am

      My boys (6th and 7th grade) kind of have a phone, but mostly just for certain situations when we need to reach them, and they don’t take it to school. They use their ipads/games at home plenty though, which is another story…but anyway, I typically walk in the mornings in my neighborhood at the time when the public middle school kids are waiting for the bus down the street. Everyday when I walk past them at the bus stop, they are ALL just looking at their phones! It’s kinda crazy. There’s usually like 1 kid without one, just sort of standing there bored because no one is talking- they are all just looking at their phones. SAD.

  • Reply Sheryl November 10, 2021 at 8:03 am

    For what it’s worth, i’ve never had Instagram yet I listen to both podcasts and keep up with them. I also am still able to discover new podcasts through other ways— blogs, newspaper, public radio, word of mouth.

  • Reply Coree November 10, 2021 at 8:31 am

    I only have Instagram logged in on my work computer – so I can’t post and I’d feel worse scrolling during the day at work that I would at night. It’s a 5 minute treat for me, while I wait for the caffeine to enter my system. But I could likely delete it completely and not miss it.

    I only have twitter on an ipad, it’s slightly important for work, but it stays at home, I check for a few minutes at night.

  • Reply Katie November 10, 2021 at 8:59 am

    FWIW I am a longtime blog reader (like, from the healthy living summit days) and have listened to BOBW from the first episode. I am not a regular listener to BLP, but do listen occasionally if it’s a topic that interests me. I have never had Instagram and don’t really intend to, but still manage to stay pretty current on stuff I care about. If I’m missing out on stuff, I think it’s far outweighed by the time saved not scrolling yet another thing. (I do have Facebook ((elder millennial here)) and have similar debates about quitting it but do feel it would result in me not knowing about some local events and happenings I want to be aware of.)

  • Reply Jenny November 10, 2021 at 9:14 am

    Your point about considering whether you even want to grow is a good one. I started a solo law practice in part so that I could have more flexibility to be with my kids and take the kind of cases that are important and interesting to me. Maintaining a workload that will actually give me that flexibility and more time with my kids requires me to say no to cases. I don’t do any marketing and have a case load that is much lower than other people. Sometimes I feel bad and thoughts start to creep in along the lines of “I’m not a real lawyer” or my law practice isn’t successful because I work part time. It really is hard to resist that pressure to grow grow grow. But I remind myself that this is my life, my practice, and my family and I can run it how I choose. This is working for me and I’m lucky to have been able to create this balance for myself. It’s really just when I get into comparing myself to others (doing things that I don’t even want to do!) that it feels like it’s not.

  • Reply Diane November 10, 2021 at 9:24 am

    I think there is definitely something to be said for your idea of spending time fostering one’s content output rather than input. Because ultimately I feel that your (smart! Insightful!) readers – at least the ones who comment and contribute to the conversation- are here for the writing and ideas and not because they collect influencers on their various platforms. I don’t think any amount of social media prettiness will bring lasting readers the way solid thoughtful posts and podcasts can. Besides when one thinks about the people who consume one’s output, would you rather have a devoted reader who follows closely or a follower who scrolls aimlessly by your posts as it is buried among the other hundreds of people they follow? The thoughts about if the numbers game is really the point is, I think, right on.
    I never got the hang of Instagram, but i was spending a lot of time on FB. When it shut down last month, I decided not to log back on and while i miss the groups and the nagging sense of missing out, but I don’t miss the toxicity and mental suck of those groups. I still spend way too much time on my phone, but i find that I’m more focussed about the stuff I read – more longform articles, more personal blogs rather than influencer blogs – and Corporette is now my guilty pleasure- and also I’m reading a lot more.

  • Reply Jen November 10, 2021 at 9:26 am

    I think the main thing is that you’re not enjoying it. If it is a way to take a break or stay connected with people it should make you feel better. It’s hard though because people do use it and it can feel like it’s an important to venue to stay caught up even socially.

    I definitely personally still like it but need manage it – and setting a timer and living with it works for me right now. 25 mins is enough to see what it is going on, take a little break but not so much to go down a whole rabbit hole and lose my afternoon or to start feeling badly about myself. When it’s positive for me, it’s really great but I am also feeling the need to prune it – I love a number of HAES dieticians and anti-diet culture feeds but i also find them really combative and I don’t really need that so i’ve been mulling over how to control that content specifically as there is important information about separating health from a slim body but anyway, i think this is an on-going process and you’ve done a good job to hone in on what you don’t like about it and try to deal with it.

    Maybe it’s taking out feeds that aren’t friends and family – remove all the celebs, news, anything that you don’t know personally … and just related to the podcast. There’s nothing that says you can’t experiment with different ways to interact.

  • Reply Pankti November 10, 2021 at 10:21 am

    For the record, I love coming to yours and Laura’s blog and feel like I have more meaningful input from the both of you than 99% of the people I follow on my instagram. I religiously listen to your podcast on Monday mornings and look forward to it as I’m falling asleep Sunday evening.

    I’ve really been doing a lot of evaluation regarding social media, and in particular instagram. I don’t feel like it’s a space for a lot of meaningful conversation anymore; it’s mostly a bunch of ads and “buy this, buy that”. Even the “influencers” that are more real than others, post something you feel like is just genuine, which then come back the following day with some sort of ad of said product. I don’t know, for me, it’s definitely an app that sucks time out without valuable input in.

  • Reply Katie November 10, 2021 at 11:36 am

    You may find, if you have a Creator account on IG, that the website now has a + button top right that lets you post from the browser. If not, then the Facebook/Instagram creator studio allows you to create and schedule posts without needing to be on the app or website at all, so no feed or posts to scroll!

    I totally think you’re right to consider what tools it makes sense for you to use from a ‘business goals’ perspective, as it were. If you are happy with what the podcast is doing right now, and you don’t need or want to engage with conversations about on IG then it totally makes sense to stop posting there. You may come to look elsewhere for a space to speak to your community, but I bet the comments on the shownotes do that really well!

  • Reply Susan November 10, 2021 at 12:14 pm

    I find that if I really curate my IG feed it becomes not very intrusive…

    Just checked my stats and it looks like I follow 134 accounts. About a third of those are various friends/family who don’t post often at all and I enjoy catching the rare post from them. Maybe another third are friends who do post often or celebrity/cooking/lifestyle feeds that I get enjoyment and education from.

    And the final third — a category you may not have encountered yet but will likely as your kids get older – are various school/team/sports/clubs/PTA accounts that I find I NEED to subscribe to in order to get information about things my kids’ schools are doing. For example, my highschooler used to be on cheer team and instagram was the main source of communication from the coaches. Now she has various clubs she is involved in and that’s where they post meeting schedules, deadlines, etc.

    So I find that I can’t really (re: don’t want to) delete the app…. but I can whittle it way down to the point that I can “finish” it everyday – I see all the posts from all the feeds and I feel like I haven’t missed anything but it only takes a few minutes here and there during the day or about 15 minutes at the end of the day to get through it all. And when I start to feel it’s creeping up, I go through and unfollow 3-5 social accounts with the most noise.

  • Reply Michelle November 11, 2021 at 6:56 am

    Thanks for sharing your concerns about this. My issue is I’ve deleted the apps but then manage to log in through my phone’s browser so there’s still no change in behavior.
    My only recourse is to delete my accounts. I’m finishing up saving all of my tagged and old photos from Facebook so I have them on my hd and then it’s goodbye social media. This life is too short and there are so many more things I’d rather be doing than wasting hours (literally some days) scrolling and I always feel worse afterwards for so many reasons listed in the comments and your blog.
    Plus I have young children and I definitely don’t want to be a model for the zombie behavior and the bad feelings that manifest as a result of social media consumption.

  • Reply Helena Murphy November 11, 2021 at 11:52 am

    Do you or should you want your blog or podcast to grow? At what pace? Only you can answer these questions and as with anything the answers may vary depending on when you answer them. This discussion reminded me of a short video in which Elizabeth Gilbert discusses “Hobbies, Jobs, Careers, and Vocation” Maybe your podcast can be your hobby-mini “fun career” (zero liability)? Better to hear her describe it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0g7ARarFNnw

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