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Instagram Ruined My Life

Have you ever found yourself not taking pictures of your family because you didn’t think it was Instagram worthy?

I realized that Instagram was ruining my life. Here's what I did to stop it.

Our Photos are our Memories

I have this fun thing I do where I keep the photos I take on my phone in an app called Google Photos. (If you have a Google account you get 15 GB of storage space for free) At the beginning of every month, I download last month’s photos to my computer using Google Photos to do so. (Because it’s available on any platform this makes transferring my pictures almost effortless. No Bluetooth, SD card, or USB cord required)

This month when I downloaded July’s pictures I downloaded maybe 10 pictures. For the entire month. And maybe 5 of those were kid pictures. I Only took 10 pictures of my life for the entire 31 days of July. 

This made me really sad.

My boys are almost 2 years old and 5 years old. I took barely any pictures of them for 31 days. 

It didn’t take me long to realize why.

Instagram Worthy Moments

For the past 31 days, I had only been taking pictures of things I wanted to post on Instagram. If it wasn’t Instagram worthy I didn’t take the picture.

Um, what?

Why on earth was I only taking pictures of my boys and my life that I wanted to put on Instagram? Why was I allowing Instagram to dictate which moments of my life were worth capturing?

I felt sick to my stomach.

I had been sacrificing memories because they weren’t Instagram worthy. Most of those moments will never be remembered. Not without a picture to trigger them. 

After I got over the horror of this revelation a new question popped into my head: Why do we fell our moments need to be social media worthy to be captured?

I mean, what drives us to feel that it’s not worth snapping a photo if we don’t feel like it’s Instagram worthy?

  • comparison
  • not exciting enough
  • not perfect enough
  • not relatable
  • making someone else feel less than
  • afraid of what people will say about you or your life

I’m sure you can add your own reasons to the list. 

It doesn’t matter what your Instagram feed looks like.

Because it’s yours. It’s yours to fill up with memories of things that are important to you and not to anyone else. Anyone who follows you is ok with what you put there. You don’t have to be perfect. In fact, you should try to be imperfect. It makes you more relatable. Because you are a human just like everyone else and we all mess up. We all have crazy days. We all have crazy lives.  And not every moment of our lives is going to live up to this idea of being Instagram worthy. Most your moments won’t. Take the 10 photos I took over 31 days as an example. I only thought 10 teeny moments out of 31 days were Instagram worthy.

Have you ever wondered what the cost is when you only capture Instagram worthy moments?

I know what the cost is for me: Moments I’ll never get to relive because I failed to pull my phone out and snap a quick picture. 

I’ll never get those moments back.

And that makes me really sad.

Our Moments are Capture Worthy no matter if they are Instagram Perfect or Not

We don’t have to keep our followers happy. In fact, we can’t. We aren’t supposed to. They will come and go and there isn’t anything we can do about it. Don’t worry about what your family thinks about you. It’s not their life you are making memories of. Same with your friends. Love them but don’t let them dictate what you choose to remember. 

When I look through my Instagram feed I feel so happy remembering those moments. It’s like a memory book you can access any time. 

There’s a picture of our 2nd son the day we brought him home from the hospital. There are pictures of my 5-year-old when he was two.😭 I don’t remember taking those photos, but the joy in my heart and the tears in my eyes when I look at them tells me that they were worth capturing. It doesn’t matter if they got 10 likes or 10,000 likes. The miracle is in the memory.

So don’t pass up the opportunity next time. Take the picture. Even if it doesn’t end up on Instagram, you’ll have access to that memory forever.

Here’s to the memories,

Alicen

P.S. If comparison is something you struggle with please read this blog post all about how to beat comparison and this post where I tell my personal story of how I ended the cycle of comparison in my life. 

      As always, here are my current book recommendations.

Disclaimer: All cover photos and book descriptions are from Goodreads.

book recommendation
A collection of humorous autobiographical essays by the Academy Award-nominated actress and star ofΒ Up in the AirΒ andΒ Pitch Perfect.

Even before she made a name for herself on the silver screen starring in films likeΒ Pitch Perfect,Β Up in the Air,Β Twilight, andΒ Into the Woods, Anna Kendrick was unusually small, weird, and β€œ10 percent defiant.”

At the ripe age of thirteen, she had already resolved to β€œkeep the crazy inside my head where it belonged. Forever. But here’s the thing about crazy: It. Wants. Out.” InΒ Scrappy Little Nobody, she invites readers inside her brain, sharing extraordinary and charmingly ordinary stories with candor and winningly wry observations.
book recommendation


At one time Corrie ten Boom would have laughed at the idea that there would ever be a story to tell. For the first fifty years of her life, nothing at all out of the ordinary had ever happened to her. She was an old-maid watchmaker living contentedly with her spinster sister and their elderly father in the tiny Dutch house over their shop. Their uneventful days, as regulated as their own watches, revolved around their abiding love for one another. However, with the Nazi invasion and occupation of Holland, a story did ensue. 

Corrie ten Boom and her family became leaders in the Dutch Underground, hiding Jewish people in their home in a specially built room and aiding their escape from the Nazis. For their help, all but Corrie found death in a concentration camp. The Hiding Place is their story.