What is the first thing you do when you wake up? For me, as much as I wish it wasn't, it is usually looking at Instagram. Your feed can have a huge impact on your thoughts and we know that it can make us feel guilty, unworthy and lazy. But it doesn't have to be this way. I have spent the past year or so honing in on who I allow myself to look at on Instagram and creating a newsfeed that makes me feel all the good things, rather than negative things. Here are my top tips for revamping your feed so you will love Insta again.
1. Find your muses
Come up with a list of accounts or people that you absolutely love. They have to inspire you, motivate you and make you feel happy whenever you see their photos. Once you have this list, these accounts can serve as a template for the people you follow in the future, because now you know what to look for. Try and interact with the people on your list, even if they're a giant account with thousands of followers, like and comment on their posts, send them messages and share their content. Not only will you be supporting the people that you really love, but you'll also be teaching the Instagram algorithm that you want to see those kinds of posts and accounts.
Be brutal. Go through everyone you follow. Every. Single. One. Look at their feed, look at their photos and captions, their stories, their bios. Work out whether they are someone you would want to talk to every day. If they are, then great! If not, get rid of them. If they are someone who you want to support (say, a friend running a business) but you don't want to see all the things they post, try muting them and you can check in on their accounts from time to time. Hone in on what accounts make your think negative thoughts and remove them from your view.
3. Watch out for red flags
As you go into the future with your new and improved Insta feed, watch out for accounts that you want to follow. Be rigorous about making sure they are a person who makes you feel positive. If you follow someone and then notice later that they are having an impact on your mood, don't hesitate to take action and remove them!
4. Warning: Don't create a bubble
As much as you want to follow people who make you feel good, this doesn't mean only following people who share all the same opinions as you. One of the great things about social media is that we get to see what the whole world is thinking, not just the people around you. There is a fine line, however. For example, for a while I was following the Yoga is Dead Podcast on Instagram. This is two women of south-east Asian descent who are trying to bring the power back to people like them who feel Westernised Yoga has destroyed the roots of Yoga. For a while, I found what they had to say very interesting and although it made me feel guilty for being a white, skinny, female yoga teacher, it also felt empowering to be able to learn how to share the stage and make the problem a bit better. However, after a few months of following them, I started to feel disheartened. I began to feel like it was a hopeless problem that I couldn't do anything about, and every time I saw one of their posts I felt shame for who I was as a Yoga teacher. It was then that I decided to unfollow. I think I will follow them again one day, and I certainly felt challenged by their posts in a positive way, but it is not worth destroying my self-worth. So, I guess what I'm saying is don't fall into the trap of only following people who agree with you - be inspired and challenged by difference, but not at the expense of your happiness.
5. Be active!
Finally, a great way to learn if you really need to be following someone is to be active while on Insta! Instead of mindless scrolling, actually read what people have to say and comment on that or message them about it. Not only will this help give you a greater sense of connection and community with the people you follow, but if you can't be bothered reading someone's post or can't think of anything you would comment, maybe it means you're just not that interested in them or what they have to say, and so maybe you can unfollow.
Above all, the best way to curate the perfect Instagram feed for you is to be mindful and thoughtful about every person you let yourself see. Show yourself love, kindness, positivity and hope and steer clear of guilt, shame, hate and ignorance. Here are six Instagram accounts that I love to start you off (not sponsored by them or anything, they're just great people!)
If you have any accounts that you would recommend, comment below! Make sure you also follow me on Instagram (if it suits you of course) - @riseandyogablog
Have any tips for creating a wholesome Insta feed? Let me know! Comment below or email me at email@example.com
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I hope you gain something from this post!
Wishing you love and light,