I've been struggling lately and I'm hoping that sharing a tiny bit of what's going on might help me get over what ever this is - or at the very least, help someone else realize they're not alone!
Ever think these thoughts?
"I haven't posted to my Instagram in almost a month (or longer).... is there even a point??"
"If I post something right now, it will feel forced - so I'm not going to do anything at all"
"I don't know how to make my Instagram account look good AND keep it consistent, so why even try?"
For those of us who rely on our Instagram marketing to help us gain new clients and make connections - this is a bad spot to be stuck in for any length of time!
I haven't posted to @lindynwilliams in a month and I feel embarrassed to admit that. It wasn't intentional, and it wasn't because I suddenly want to quit everything... (lol..although that thought has crossed my mind)
When I feel like I don't have my shit together, I try to disappear. And the first thing to go is my willingness to share with my online community...actually - the first thing to go is my willingness to share, period.
This mindset I'm in effects all aspects of life. I don't want anyone to know that I'm struggling with every day things. I'm not sure I'd call it perfectionism necessarily - but it most definitely is a form of it. I typically do not admit to "being in the thick of it" as I prefer to talk after the fact..but this feeling isn't ending!
I am not on the other side of all this - in fact, I've been going thru lots of self doubt moments everyday. Moments that I know won't help me serve the people I want to serve, or myself, but they're still happening.
So how do I get past this??
Here are a few ideas that I've been working with lately:
First off, what I'm NOT doing is apologizing for being inconsistent with my Instagram posts. I saw an account recently, who shared in their IG stories: "sorry its been so long since my last post! I've been busy doing blah blah blah... I swear I'll be back soon!".....
ummm... what's there to be sorry for?!?! This only enforces the notion that we all need to be online sharing. All. The. Time. :|
So please, DO NOT EVER APOLOGIZE FOR TAKING TIME AWAY FROM SOCIAL MEDIA - EVER!!
My online community is freaking awesome - and if you're a part of that - THANK YOU! But, the reality of using social media as a main form of marketing is that it gets tiring! Using IG or Facebook intentionally as a gateway to amazing connections is a wonderful thing but sometimes - you just need a break!
Clearly, I needed a break.
What I am doing now, however, is forgiving myself for not doing what I want to do or feeling how I want to feel - and reaching (little by little) out to those I know can help lift me up.
If you've been feeling at all like you're behind on your instagram posts (or behind in LIFE?!), and that people aren't getting the full effect of what you offer, or who you are - take a step back. Don't post for the sake of posting - but instead, save your thoughts until you can really help someone else and create value for your communities.
Oh, and definitely tell someone you trust about how you feel if any of this is speaking to you. This feeling I'm talking about goes beyond Instagram and needs to be worked through.
How to Get Back To Posting Consistently On Instagram After A Long Break (planned or not!)
1) Don't apologize for disappearing and not posting.
2) Take a break from your own expectations of what you "should" be doing.
3) Forgive yourself for not meeting said expectations.
4) When you're ready, give yourself a bit of a running start and plan out 6-9 posts or more if you can. Think about a topic you want to share and get really specific about it - think about how you can add value to someone who reads it. Then go and post those amazing thoughts and images within a week. At least 2 per day.
I use a program called Planoly to visually map out what I will be sharing - and I fill in the captions some ahead of time, and some as I go to keep everything relevant.
5) Remember that your community connects to your humanness - not your perfect images. Don't be afraid to speak your mind and use your platform as a form of conversation. That is how those strong connections are made after all!
Hope this post helped you because I definitely wrote it as a reminder for myself. LOL
Please feel free to share with me how you're doing too! Summer is a crazy time with lots of transitions, but it's a great time to launch something new - or make bold changes to a tired routine - especially on Instagram. Let me know if you have any questions! I'm here to help.