How to Cope with Insta-Envy
I'm sure I'm not the only one who spends too much time scrolling through Instagram wishing I had someone's hair/jacket/house/life. Instagram envy is a little green-eyed monster that sits on most of our shoulders, bringing out the very worst in us, and it's almost impossible to quell.
I don't want to single anyone out, but there are a few people on Instagram who bring out that little monster more than others. To risk sounding like a bit of a creep, these are the feeds I check first thing every day and whose photos I save into folders named 'Style Envy', 'HAIR' and 'Dream House'. We all do it, and we all need to learn to step back from the 'gram and get over it.
So how do you learn to live with a little bit of Insta-Envy, without letting it consume you?
STEP AWAY FROM YOUR PHONE
Don't spend your entire life stalking someone on Instagram, no matter how perfect their grid may be. Put your phone down, preferably in a different room and get on with your own life. You might not have perfect hair, but reconnect with the tangible things that you do have, such as your partner, friends, family or pets. Rediscover the things that you liked doing before an app started to consume your life.
REMEMBER, NOBODY'S PERFECT
No matter how perfect someone's life may seem, it helps to take a step back and remember that they are only sharing the best, most photogenic elements of their life. There's plenty going on behind closed doors that you don't know about, and don't forget the filter that's layered over everything. Someone may look flawless in every single photo, but don't forget that there's plenty of editing tools out there. Even influencers have fat days and occasional spots. Everyone is normal, and nobody's perfect.
REASSESS YOUR PRIORITIES
At the end of the day, Instagram is a social media channel, that's all. Make a list of the things that matter the most to you in your life: your health, your relationships, your career, having a roof over your head. Be honest with yourself - where do you rate social media on that list? For most of us, it's pretty low down. I love Instagram as much as the next blogger, but it isn't the most important thing in your life.
CURATE THE BEST BITS
Worried that your feed looks substandard next to all of the photogenic influencers out there? As mentioned above, everyone only shares the highlights of their lives on Instagram, so why not do the same. Instagram is no longer instant - there's no reason why you can't build up a bank of images that you love and spread them out, sharing one or two photos a day of your own 'highlights'. Banish the bland and curate a feed full of your good hair days, new shoes and travel snaps - who knows, perhaps someone else has Insta-envy scrolling through your account!
The most important thing to remember is that, however addictive scrolling may be, Instagram is just an app at the end of the day. It's a place for people to show the most photogenic parts of their day, and no-one is realistically going to share the not-so-pretty bits such as cleaning the house or squeezing onto the train to commute to work. Take everything you see with a pinch of salt and remember that everyone has their low points and insecurities.
Do you have any further advice for coping with Instagram-envy? I'd love to hear your thoughts below.
Photos by Lucy Ridges