I’m a pretty introverted person in real life. Spending time with friends and family is great and I love doing it, but sometimes I get pretty exhausted when I hang out with them. It’s nothing to do with them!
As an introvert, energy comes from being alone and doing my own thing. While I’m not a recluse, I do spend a majority of my time alone and when I do I feel revitalized.
So you would think that being on the Internet would counteract some of that energy because I’m not physically out doing something with people. Sadly, that’s not the case.
What usually happens is that I engage and interact with people. I comment on posts. I tweet. I do a lot of things on the Internet. And even though I’m not really seeing people in real life and using my own voice, I’ve been feeling pretty low energy.
That’s why you sometimes see days without posts and weeks where I take a break.
It’s gotten to a point where I’m taking longer breaks in order to feel better. I stop reading and writing and just focus on playing video games or watching The Bachelor. I post my photo and then don’t return back to the photo until much later in the day on Instagram. It’s not because I’m too busy, but because I just don’t want to engage right now. Because I’m too tired from chatting, which feels sad to me.
And sadly, the Internet doesn’t really let you do that. Instead, you have to engage and you have to keep up because the sites we use require it from their users. If you want to build a following, you need to constantly be talking to them. It makes sense, but for a user like me, it’s exhausting.
So what do you do when you’re tired of engaging and want to take a break? You risk your own mental health or your Internet following?
In my opinion, an Internet following doesn’t mean anything in the grand scheme of things. Stuff like your mental health means much more than how many people like your post. I don’t want to abandon my friends or discourage anyone from posting, but my mental health is very precarious and when it’s not high, then I’m low.
So how do you combat this feeling of low energy? Here’s how I do it:
Turn off business features for your Instagram.
I had my business account on Instagram for a year and honestly, the only insights it gave me was whether or not people liked my posts or didn’t. I didn’t find it helpful in any other way than that. Maybe it was helpful to find out when my followers were on IG the most, but that was about it.
Instead, I found myself obsessing over numbers and making me weary that I’m not doing enough to engage with the community. I decided to turn off business features.
Ever since I did that, I feel like I can be myself a little bit more. Yeah, I won’t be able to swipe up on stuff, but that’s okay. I still have people who go to my link in the bio because I can see that conversion on my blog.
Worry less on who isn’t liking you and focus more on the people you interact with daily.
As everyone knows, engagement is really important on social media. You have to speak with your public and they will speak back and you will make friendships. If this isn’t your thing, then this will be exceptionally tough for you.
However, you don’t have to talk to everyone! Curate your social media to your likes and your favorites so that you’re always inundated with great posts and content that you’ll enjoy. This will make the energy sapping much easier.
Don’t stress out if someone with a million followers isn’t talking to you. That’s okay! They have busy lives or they can’t make it to the Internet to chat. Instead, focus on the people that you do talk to everyday. They’re the ones that truly care about you and want to get to know you, your brand, and everything you do. It’s a much better experience hanging out with your friends everyday than pleasing strangers.
Break up your screen time to small chunks throughout the day
I realized that I can spend all day on social media if I wanted to. While for some that’s their full-time job, for me it’s pretty energy draining to stare at your phone all day. The worst is when you look at your phone and make comparisons of your work with others. It’s something that I do often and a bad habit.
So what I end up doing is breaking up my time on Instagram into small chunks. Every few hours, I hop on for about fifteen to thirty minutes, make a few comments, chat back with a few people, and then I get off again. Breaking up my time has seriously helped my mood and brought my focus back to other things I wanted to do.
Designate a time at night to stop engaging all together
I am a strong believer that once the day is done, then work is over. That’s why you may not see me after a certain hour at night chatting online The reason is that I like to spend my evenings with myself. I watch some TV, enjoy dinner, and maybe read a book. After 9 or 10 PM, I put my phone down for the rest of the evening. Unless I’m playing Candy Crush, I try not to pick my phone up again until the next day.
The time spent offline has really helped my mental health improve and give me the space I need away from my Internet friends. Prior to the Internet, we were all spending quality time with our families after work or after dinner. I like to keep that up because if you don’t, you can be engaging with people and finding stuff on the Internet forever.