ADDICTED TO ATTENTION
Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms among us today. It allows us to portray our lives in a way that we want ourselves to be seen. Some of us have a small minded goal of gaining large amounts of followers for no reason at all. Studies in the past have shown the platform helps produce endorphins which makes us happier.
These endorphins can lead to becoming addicted to social media, in the same way as smoking, drinking and video games. The task of uploading every day for a month, would not only show the results your Instagram account can have, but also what is happening psychologically.
Uploading 28 Instagram posts was no pickle, it certainly gave me something to think about every day. It was something that was interesting to take part in despite how silly it sounds. People will always tell you that if you want to grow on Instagram, you need to upload daily.
I started the month with 833 followers and no problem with uploading whatsoever. I had always seen Instagram as a place to mark special occasions, memories that I could look back on with a caption, which I thought made me seem funny. That is realistically how I portray myself to everyone I meet. I adapted my feed to one I admired which became a ‘classic overhead shot’.
I started my first few days hardly thinking about what I was going to upload. A busy schedule gave me opportunities to feature something, I never had to stress about it.
I noticed that I was taking a hell of a lot more photos than I usually would. My food, my nights out, the magazine or book I was reading was always given the centre of attention.
There was some growth in my followers and likes in the first couple of weeks. Nothing major was happening but I could see; uploading every day rather than every two weeks was helping the account grow. I could feel that I was accomplishing something when in reality, I was just fooling myself.
Uploading every day started to become something that I really did not want to do. It was a chore rather than something spontaneous; I realised I just didn’t have an interesting enough life.
I started wondering if the reason I was having stress was because of my university work or uploading to Instagram. Probably university work, but giving myself this task gave me some problems in the real world. I craved attention. No matter what was going on, I wanted to be in the centre of it and in turn this ruined me.
I tried to remember a time before I uploaded to Instagram; is this doing it to me or had I always been like this? I was falling out with friends over stupid conversations that were ultimately my fault. This was my realisation, I wanted to get away from Instagram as quick as possible.
Now this all seems a bit dramatic for something as stupid as a social media platform but this is how I felt. Social media is supposedly meant to make us feel good because of all the likes and followers. It did for a time, I felt like I was the most popular person on the planet, I was receiving fifty-seventy likes a day and that felt great. I made the internet think I was some rich, middle class kid with a cool lifestyle. It looked like I was constantly doing something with my life when in reality, I was laying in bed for eight hours until it was ‘time to post to Instagram’.
I stopped caring what I was going to post on Instagram, it really became boring. The same thing, over and over and over. It became tiresome and my overhead shots weren’t being uploaded as frequently as they were at the start. As dramatic as I make this out to be, I really did want to finish my task.
In the real world, I tried to stop seeking attention so much; whether I succeeded or not I’m not sure. But I was fed up of the person I turned into and I knew if I carried on I would soon be making an appearance on Keeping up with the Kardashians.
It all rolled around quicker than I thought and before I knew it, I was on my last day of uploading. I got to try out Instagram’s new feature as well. I gained 100 followers, my average of likes increased massively but that was all I accomplished. I’m not saying I was expecting a medal, but at the end of it, I really couldn’t understand why people would put themselves through all this trouble to gain a few followers.
Or maybe I really am an attention seeking b****.