My Trouble with Social Media

my trouble with social media - sugar & cloth

Before I delve into this quick thought, I want to say that I’d love to hear your feedback and thoughts on how you may balance your social media presence. As the daughter of a counselor, I’m a firm believer that sometimes you just have to talk things out to figure them out, and I’m super excited to hear your perspective on this topic. So, here goes the story on my trouble with social media…

Ironically, I’ve always loved social media for the most part. I remember when Facebook used to require a college email address in order to sign up, and I had to wait a whole year to catch up to my friends that were a bit older than me before I could join this elite, cool kids club that was known as having a Facebook profile. Clearly a lot has changed between then and now, and fast forward ten years later, here we are discussing this first world problem as we know it. To say it bluntly, I’m a little tired of social media.

I’m a little tired of feeling like my profession (as the editor and main voice behind this blog), that I’m required to jump on every social media train early and corral as much of a following as I can, by being as entertaining and cool as I can look online (and that’s definitely just it). Don’t get me wrong, I love keeping up with friends and being inspired by creatives I’ve never heard of before. I love reading your comments, and the kind things you have to say about the content we create (it really makes my day!). I love that you can even use social media as a way to meet new people locally, or to promote a cause that might not otherwise have a voice. I love that we can find out about injustices in the blink of an eye from one share on Twitter, and that we can all debate the color of a (black and blue) dress as an entire collective group in a matter of days.

As much good that comes from the entertainment, creativity, and information we get from social media, I’m just tired of the pressure to keep up. Yes, there are things we all have to do that coincide with our careers that we have to just look past and keep trucking through for the good stuff, but I’m talking about the grey areas, like the question of what’s sharing too much and what’s sharing too little? Or the competitive side of it that no one really talks about much, where we’re in this quiet race to get as many followers, friends requests, and likes as we can (it’s true, don’t pretend it’s never crossed your mind!).

I think we can all agree it all gets chalked up to “everything in moderation”, or sticking to what’s comfortable to you, and I believe that’s true. I’d just like to start a conversation here by saying maybe I just don’t want to be on Periscope because I’d probably turn blood red in the face from stage fright, or have a small breakdown where I’m eating a cupcake while also crying and talking about my to-do list for that week. Maybe I just want to enjoy hanging out with Jared and our family and friends on the weekends without having to Snapchat live whatever (likely unexciting, mind you) thing that we’re doing, instead of being in the moment. I’m never going to get this time or these experiences back.

As small business owners, we don’t get a ton of time to ourselves or weekends off, and I really cherish the time that we do. I also really cherish just having a quiet moment in between DIY projects that we’re shooting to share here on the blog with you, and sometimes I’d rather just embrace the few minutes of quiet than to style a quick photo and think of the perfect caption for twenty minutes to post on Instagram. I also would rather not post anything, then to post something fake from my day pretending like everything is bows and bubble gum when really I feel like throwing the nearest macaron.

I say all of this, and today I’ll still Instagram something, login to check Facebook, retweet on Twitter.. you name it. I just wanted to use this as a big sigh of relief to have at least said it out loud. I’d love to sort it all out and find my rhythm and pace, the things I’m comfortable with sharing with the online world, and the things I’m not, but I haven’t figured it out yet.

One thing I know for sure, is that I’m super thankful for those of you that care to follow along with this crazy story that is Sugar & Cloth. I’m even thankful for those of you that keep me on my toes with grammar errors, tips and new techniques for DIY, and those of you that just take the time to ask a question so you can make your own S&C project. In return, I want to make sure we’re staying authentic to was feels right, and true, and just what feels like “us” and not what is everyone else. I also want you all to feel that I (we) are just normal, approachable people that don’t live an overly glamorized life (though still thankful for the cool experiences we do get to have), and we have plenty of bad days where no sugar is to be had, too.

I’d love to hear your experiences or take on this!

P.S.- While we’re all on the topic of being open and honest here, I’m SUPER TIRED OF NATIONAL HASHTAG HOLIDAYS. It’s a love/hate relationship that I can’t even keep up with! I laugh, then I cry, then I look for the nearest #smoresday/ #popsicleday/ #cookieday/ #watermelondday/ #dogday/ #younameitday to eat, hug, or photograph…

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75 thoughts on “My Trouble with Social Media”

  1. it seems like not only you have this problem. stay strong, the battle is longer than you think. please share as much as you can, people will stay beside you

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  2. I just read this post and I don’t know yet how old is it, but I’m one of the passionate enthusiasts of sugar and cloth here in Brazil and your work inspires me deeply to be a better blogger and content producer day by day.
    Unfortunately, I must agree with everything I’ve read. I also feel that I have lost more and more moments of my real life to think about content for social media constantly and the problem is that if I try to live only the real life moments, I end up feeling guilty for not being present online, after all, I want that my work on internet growing and, for this to happen, I must always be present on insta, facebook or twitter. But it doesn’t looks like an option. It looks more like a handcuff, doesn’t it?

    The worst part for me is that, in my case, the pressure is still a little bigger. I do everything I do in my blog and I still don’t make money with it, despite the high investments and abdicate so many things in my personal life waiting that my blog grows is a big pressure on my shoulders that makes me feel more and more like i’ve failed, already That sometimes it seems like I’m running after something that is not working.

    But seeing brilliant and honest works as yours inspires me and I feel that I must continue and, who knows, one day, i could be a reference of inspiration here in Brazil.

    kisses, love u

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    • Hi Math, thank you so so much for the kind and encouraging words. It makes my day to know that we aren’t in this alone :)

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  3. I am so glad to hear bloggers I respect and admire voice this concern. I have this concern too, about how blogging is no longer about your content, but also your social media presence. I’m a very private person and social media makes me feel a bit fake. But I also hear you about how you’re spending your weekend and how there’s this pressure to share everything on social media, and if your are having a boring day, there’s this underlying stress to … idk, do something not boring for the like. I wrote more about my thoughts on this in the post below. It’s mostly about pinterest and how I feel like there’s no point creating something if it’s not going to get a ton of pins, which is not what being a DIYer is about.

    http://aweekfromthursday.com/2015/05/blogger-thoughts-perfectionism-pinterest-and-self-promotion/

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  4. Thank you for writing this! It’s everything I’ve been feeling lately. I’ve been blogging for years but have yet to really gain a solid following — my accounts are still pretty small-beans and sometimes I feel the pressure to do more/be better/sign up for new media channels/never have time to breathe. And though I love sharing and learning and challenging my own thoughts and others’, I just…don’t want my life to exist only on a screen. I’ve been trying to be very truthful in my posting style and social media in general, and however it pans out, is how it is.

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  5. I too am tired of social media. I always feel like I am missing opportunities, I feel guilty when I am on it and guilty when I am too tired to be on it. I keep thinking I should be doing more. What a weird world we live in when it is brave to admit that we are tired of SM. Mel xx

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  6. Wow, lots of comments on this one! I’m sure I’m saying nothing original here… love/hate social media as well. I’m obviously way small beans compared to you, but it’s a TON of work and I’ve just decided to participate in the ways that I want to. Like you said, time is ticking away and not every moment needs to be documented… some moments are just okay to happen and happen off camera. I’m doing my best to not join snapchat and periscope (for now at least). I have not a doubt in my mind, whether you decide to join on that train or not, if you keep creating the lovely things you are doing — people will still keep loving you! Craft on Sugar + Cloth!!

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  7. So glad I’m not alone in this! I’m constantly keeping an eye out for that “instagrammable” shot. It feels so forced sometimes, but if I don’t, I’ll totally forget to post for weeks at a time! I usually try to plan my tweets ahead of time (using Buffer) but even finding the time to sit down and do that is rough.

    I get the highest anxiety about sharing my design work on Dribbble. “Should I even post this?” “Oh no, I haven’t posted anything in weeks – people are going to think I’m not even working on anything!” etc. So ridiculous… but I guess you have to find that balance between successful marketing and driving yourself crazy. I’m trying to get better at not comparing my feeds to others, but I think I need that little competitive nudge, haha.

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  8. I’m 38 so I remember Facebook starting and it was for college kids! Ha! So I didn’t really grow up with social media . . . and to tell you the truth, I’m over it too. I’d shut my FB pages down in two seconds if it weren’t for the fact that sponsors want me to have it. I personally HATEEEEE Facebook. It’s so negative . . . and egotistical . . . and just gross to me. It’s important to me that I keep my pages positive and upbeat. I don’t share anything controversial, political, etc. as I prefer to hash important things out in real life/person. I’m not the daughter of a counselor, but I come from a dysfunctional family so I’ve been to enough of them :D

    Besides that, I think a few things – because I use social media both for fun and for work (blogging).

    1) If I love the social media, I’ll use it regardless of how good they are for my blogging. I have loved StumbleUpon since day one, and have found some of the most awesome/creative things on the internet on there, so I’d use it even if it didn’t blog. I like Pinterest too. It happens to be the #1 traffic driver for me, so I use it probably more than I would without that, but I like it.
    2) For the business part of what I do, I grab user names as soon as possible. Then I decide how much effort I’m going to put into that particular social media. I don’t care about Periscope, Vine, etc and I don’t have time for them. I’m just one woman. Plus I have to earn money – I’m paying a household of bills via my salary . . . so I can only spend so much time on social media that do nothing for my traffic. UNLESS I love them, aka, #1.
    3) I just can’t do it all, so some of my social media are the “real” me. I don’t have a beautiful Instagram account – it’s just the real me behind the scenes. I love beautiful Instagram accounts and think it’s great if people do it for their blog or just because they love it . . . I can’t. I need a social outlet that I can just be “me” with crappy lighting and off the cuff shots.

    I honestly believe that things were better before a lot of social media, but maybe it’s because I’m getting older :D And I can also say that when I’m not on the computer for the day, or with my phone, and I’m out living life, I feel better! I don’t want to die hooked to my phone, checking my stupid Instagram. Dramatic maybe . . . but completely true.

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  9. I love what you have said here on so many levels. I am currently working on a plan to start my own business over the next year, and literally one of my biggest fears is how I will use social media. I check Facebook daily, but I post something personal maybe every-other-year. Ha. I know I’ll have to up my game, but the thought of it consuming my life and, like you said, taking me out of the present as I strive for the perfect fake picture, sounds so very draining. Recently I had a small panic attack when I realized that I had friends coming over in about 20 minutes, but that I hadn’t done anything to make a really special food presentation on the table. I felt this horror that someone might post a pic on Instagram of my dumpy looking table with unstylized refreshments, but then I remembered we’d have a blast regardless of how fancy the table looked. And that it’s okay if every second of my life isn’t glamorous and Pinterest worthy. I think we get so worried about how luxurious something will look online that we don’t ever really relax. Which is ironic. The more fun, chill, and beautiful someone’s life is on social media, the more they are probably stressed and preoccupied with looking cool online, and therefore not ever really relaxed. The end. :)

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  10. Keeping up with the latest scares me…I remember thinking Pinterest wasn’t going to take off and took a long time to jump on the bandwagon. What if I’m late again? What if I don’t lock in my name and then end up with some weird variation that won’t tie in with my other outlets? I try to follow what works for me, hence my Periscope/Snapchat/YouTube denials…I don’t do videos. But everyone says I should, tons more traffic, etc.

    It is a never-ending struggle to keep relevant in our technology age without fear of burn out . I am so glad to hear I am not the only one!!

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  11. Your photos are always beautiful eye candy, but I completely understand! I struggle with social as well, and my followers clearly reflect it. I like to share glimpses of my everyday rather than styled photos that set unrealistic expectations. And the pain of losing followers for showing my front porch – ugh! Social is a job in itself and being social online can cost you being social in person. I agree, everything in moderation. Just know that you’re always inspiring, no matter what you do!

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  12. AMEN! I feel the same way. I downloaded snapchat and then deleted it 2 days later because I was like “why am I doing this? This is dumb.”

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  13. I agree with all of this so much! I sometimes find the social media side of blogging really overwhelming. I love how it connects everyone but it’s a 24/7 job to be styling and representing your brand on all these channels too (and sometimes I just like retweeting pictures of funny animals!). I didn’t bother with snap chat or periscope as I just wasn’t interested so I figured I wouldn’t have the enthusiasm to do it well enough. I think it’s great to be selective and keep some of your time and some of your life just for you
    Hannah xx

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  14. I’m still stuck in the mindset that Snapchat is what my nieces and nephews use to sext all their friends. I’m a grandma and can’t figure out how to really use it. And I don’t really have the desire to! That’s okay. I’m learning to let that go. I feel like this all the time, but especially more so now that our social brands are growing and opportunities are presenting themselves more. Sometimes we just have to step back, possibly decline an opportunity that isn’t really going to change our lives, and breath. So many hugs to you. We’ll be together again soon. In Paris. (That’s a quote from the movie “Anastasia”, which is on repeat at my house for my daughter and we watch it when I’m not stalking IG.)

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  15. I don’t do much outside of Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter. Some days, that even feels like too much. When I recently heard of Periscope, I was exhausted just listening to it. I’m far too lazy and just a tinge wary of that. I can handle people looking at my pictures or silly things I say while they poop, but video is just too much.
    I feel like I’m being negative.
    So, I’d also like to add that social media has added a lot to our culture and I don’t know where I would be without all of my internet pals. Like you said!
    Also: I was driven to my wit’s end yesterday. I love dogs, but jeez. Some days you just have to sign off and come back later. I think sometimes we all need a wee break.

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  16. Well I’m glad I’m not the only one. I have a feeling that we’re part of the same generation i.e. The Oregon Trail Generation (http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2015/04/oregon-trail-generation/). I know that when I started my blog, I did it because I love to write and I love food, so I put that together. Simple. What I don’t love is feeling like I need to be “active” on social media putting messages out that just end up feeling a bit empty and forced.

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  17. Thank you for speaking out about this! I feel the same way. I mostly use social media to documents events for my own purposes. I’m about to leave for Italy and will be leaving my smartphone at home. Blasphemous, I know but after juggling three different cameras while in Chicago I just got sick of it of trying to post in the moment.

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  18. These words are exactly what I have been feeling lately. I am so with you on this and so glad you put your feelings out there. It’s definitely hard to find the balance in everything we do as small business owners, but I just try to stay positive. It’s nice to know I’m not the only on who feels this way!

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  19. I really appreciate this post…especially the timing! Here’s the deal, I gave up on Facebook 5 years ago while I was dating my now husband. We decided we didn’t want to get caught up in all of that. I kinda boycotted all forms of social media…not kinda, I did. I didn’t have a single thing. About a year ago, I got Instagram and totally loved it. Once I started blogging (about 4 months ago) I started feeling that pressure you are talking about. I started wondering if I should get Facebook again or join twitter. It was all for the sake of growing the blog. But then I realized..I don’t like Facebook! I don’t like having to think of catchy things to post on Twitter! So why should I force myself to do something I don’t love? And for my blog?!? Now that’s something I love! Whether or not it ever becomes some huge blog with millions of followers, I still enjoy what I do. So I’m going to continue! I’m standing firm against the social media rat race. We should be able to do what we love as much or as little as we doggone want to! :)

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    • I totally support you in this! I’d also love to say that I really commend you both for not staying on social media as newly married, I think especially in our generation things can be very tempting/trying when trying not to compare who’s grass is greener, if you know what I mean! I think in a lot of ways life was simpler before SM!

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  20. Ditto on comment about quality over quantity. Authenticity matters just as much too. Social media allows us to play in the field we want, live in the moment but we don’t have to be every field and play in every space. Don’t just celebrate national milkshake day just because everyone else is — you have to think about how the things you create and the things you make will stand out from the sea of other posts and if it is worth your time. Pick and choose “national days” and events that highlight your goals and your brand. I always ask myself, are you creating a visual or brand message that will ultimately lead you to your goals and endeavors? Are you doing it for you or doing it for others?

    You already make and create so much awesome work!

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  21. HA! thanks for this post! and the national holiday hashtags bug hard. as much as its fun to celebrate, they’ve now become this “who can produce the BEST content for said hashtag holiday” some do it SO well and others totally fail. I just wish folks who don’t hve that game down would let it go.. and yeah, i was a HARD “no” on snapchat, but look, there I am using it. I’m a hard “no” on periscope, because i don’t get it at all nor do I want to stream anythign live and i;’m sure people don’t care about that aspect of my life. anyway.. it’s rough. all of this will wind down, it has to! instagram is still my fave :)

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  22. It sounds like a lot of what your are feeling is related to competition. You are putting this pressure on yourself to over use social media because you want have more followers and likes than someone else, not because you enjoy it. You can never win that sort of competition. There will always be a friend who has more followers. Are you in this to express your creativity or to win? When you let go of the competition you can be happier and you’ll have more room for creativity and joy in what you are doing. I’m not a blogger and as a reader I can tell when someone’s Instagram feed is full of, “I have to post 5 pictures today” and someone is just doing there thing and sharing it with the world.

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  23. It’s a thin rope on which we try to find a balance! I also find it difficult to determine the boundary for what to share, where and how much time to spend on it. Fortunately I read I’m not the only one (you and your readers) with these findings. Thanks for sharing your story with us :-)

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  24. I am exhausted FOR all the people who do feel like they need to be on everything and ARE. I have no frickin idea what Periscope is but I see all these people on my Instagram saying they have it and I’m like “Ok have fun with that”. I feel like things like that will come and go (Anyone posted a VINE lately? Yeah didn’t think so…) and you should stick with the platform that works for you. IG is visual and that’s where I put in my effort. I have no idea what I’m doing on Twitter so I rarely post because I think Twitter is more for writers. I post to FB when I feel like it. I never feel like I’m missing out or not keeping up. I put my energy into ONE and make it GREAT. Or try to anyway. I also have SnapChat for the weird things I want to share that would make my IG feed look ugly (ha!) but I think it’s fun.
    I am also seriously over the food holidays. I can’t get to the gym enough to keep up!

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    • hahah! I’m also part of the “okay, have fun with that” group with you! I agree that if I had to pick two things right now it would be Instagram and Snapchat on levels on importance/popularity in the SM world!

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  25. I’m so with you there! I think when I had Henry, the balance of things just tilted more heavily the other way. I stopped trying to “keep up.” I keep getting emails asking me to try out new social media apps and that my profile has already been saved for me, but I always respond with a “no” because if I want to live my life, enjoy my husband and kid, have adventures, and the sort, I need to keep my social media intake low. I decided that I would blog whenever I could, and I pretty much just do Instagram. Other outlets only get updated when there’s a new blog post and such. If I look back at where I was standing in social media 1.5 years ago (right before Henry was born), I’d say my “reach” has significantly gone down. I get 1/3 of the response from people as I used to and you know what, I’m strangely okay with that. Those that actually cared stuck around and those are the ones I’m most grateful to because they are huge motivators for me to not toss in the towel. There’s my vent. Hope you just make a plan for yourself and stick to it, regardless of what others say. You know your life best and what you can handle in order to keep enjoying real life. Hugs!

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    • I’ve always loved following along with you even before little Henry, but I totally appreciate hearing your words, and I feel reassured in that we have similar feelings in this now. The funny thing is I still follow along with you, so I’m excited to still be a part of the 1/3, and I think the dedicated followers are with me on that!

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  26. I wanted to say thank you for this post. I’ve struggled with social media, especially the last few months. Half the time I feel like I have no idea what I am doing. The other half is spending so much time working on engagement when I should be working on creating and selling. I’m changing my attitude and plan starting today.

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  27. completely agree with what your point of view. I am running my own small business too and this is almost exactly how I feel. I don’t wanna share something just because it’s been a while since my last post. And I don’t want to be talking to people who don’t care.

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    • I hear you! Authenticity makes a world of difference when it comes to community and followers, and people can definitely tell what’s real and what’s not over time!

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  28. I know how you feel! I got off of Facebook over a year ago (and don’t miss it) and now I’m thinking of deleting Twitter since I don’t use it much. Granted, I’m not supporting a business, but I still feel like it takes away from time I could spend doing…anything else, really.

    Also, I just finished reading a post from Alexandra Franzen on this very topic. (Not affiliated, just sharing here because I think it’s a great read.) Enjoy!
    http://www.alexandrafranzen.com/2015/08/19/why-i-do-not-use-social-media-anymore/

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  29. I loved this post. I really get what you are saying. As a 40-something with grown kids I can look back to the days with no social media with fondness. One thing that I have learned from my daugher (19) is that perfection gets old fast. She and her friends love the imperfect and are tired of all of the clean, pristine, social media out there. They don’t like things overly staged or propped too much. She loves snapchat because it is instant and not something that you can get “too cool” or perfect. My brand may not have a perfect instagram account but I am just having fun and being real. I only take a photo if I want to and maybe just post it even if I don’t look great. It is good to learn from the new generation coming up that have grown up with social media. They are looking at it differently and having more fun with it!
    xoxo,
    Sandee

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    • I LOVE being real, and really wish we could make more of a comeback with it because it’s important that an unrealistic standard not be set. I loved reading your thoughts on this, so thank you so much for taking the time to write from yours and your daughter’s perspective! xoxo

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  30. I get very tired of it all too, Ashley. I feel you so much on this struggle. I’ve definitely wished that all social media could go away (as much as I’m a huge fan haha), even for a temporary period. I noticed I start to feel like if I don’t share it on social then it didn’t happen, which is not a happy way to live, especially when I’m on a trip (lugging around my DSLR, stopping at every potential IG shot and then standing there trying to get the shot, the worst)!! So generally when I’m hanging out in a group or at an event unrelated to the blog, I keep the phone in my bag. Not proud to say it gets hard, or that I fail sometimes, but it feels like a small victory. AND, on days where it feels like I’m scrambling to find something to post, I’m now quicker to decide ok, don’t post on social today. Before, I’d agonize over it and waste so much time forcing myself to come up with something to share <– Recipe for burnout and unauthentic stories = not fun.

    Thanks for starting this conversation. It's one that can never be openly talked about enough. <3

    PS. I never joined in on celebrating all those national holidays (except ice cream, because ice cream) because it stresses me out too much to try and keep up with them :P

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    • We could definitely be great friends! I do the same thing as far as keeping my phone away when it’s not business related, and trying to keep it all in perspective. It definitely is a recipe for being burnt out and bitter if not! xoxo

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  31. I am with you on every bit of this blog post. Sometimes I just really hate social media and wish I could just delete my Facebook because I just do not need to see a picture of everyone’s dog, read everyone’s opinion about Donald Trump or see how long they have been Facebook friends with so and so. But as a small business owner in a small almost non-existent town, it is basically necessary to have these accounts or no one but my mom would know I even have an online shop.
    I have found that planning out posts for the week has made it less nerve wracking and it allows me to pop on, post, and get away from it!
    Social media has probably caused as much doubt and unhealthy comparison as it has generated business. Somedays I just do not know what is best!
    Thanks for your honest thoughts and allowing me to join the rant!
    Blessings,
    Katie
    www.agirlnamedkatie.com

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    • This! – “wish I could just delete my Facebook because I just do not need to see a picture of everyone’s dog, read everyone’s opinion about Donald Trump or see how long they have been Facebook friends with so and so.”

      Thank you! You read my mind.

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  32. Thank you so much for opening up about this and sharing! I completely agree that SM can be exhausting. I feel the same way….what’s the balance of SM and being in the moment? I think it’s ok the schedule ahead and take a break from SM for a few days. Not check likes, comments, followers. But I agree with you that it’s a love/hate relationship because you love your followers! Sometimes it’s just good to take a deep breath, let out what’s on your mind, and then rest :) Thanks again for sharing this! It’s encouraging to know I’m not the only one that feels this way!

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  33. I’ve definitely been feeling the same way about social media lately. It can be very fun to use, but sometimes it’s so hard to keep up with all the different platforms. Even as somebody who just blogs for fun and can take a break from social media whenever they’d like, it can be very overwhelming. Thank you so much for writing about this and being so honest.

    -Helen
    http://www.sweethelengrace.com

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  34. Ah, you are a girl after my own heart, and that’s the truth. To be honest, I’m a bit overwhelmed by social media (as much as I love it) and I go back and forth between extremes: SHARE EVERYTHING and disappear for an undisclosed amount of time. I’m still trying to work out the balance.
    I remember a few weeks back I had a weekend off with no plans (bliss!) and my husband was away. I stayed up crazy late Friday night working on a project that didn’t work out AT ALL, slept in on Saturday and didn’t leave the house until 3pm at which point I went to a coffeeshop alone to read my book. The whole time I felt like a complete failure because I wasn’t having any ‘shareable’ experiences that I could post on Instagram, Facebook, or my blog. But when I thought about it outside the social media context, I really did enjoy my laid-back weekend. That’s when I realized that life can be (and often IS) lived in those solitary ‘unshareable’ and non-photogenic moments that we have alone or with those closest to us. I don’t want to sacrifice beautiful memories or moments of rest in order to capture the perfect instagram photo. Of course, I’m always happy when I can snap a great photo, but I don’t want that to be my main focus.
    I love reading posts like this – thank you for sharing your thoughts! You’re right – sometimes we just need to talk it out :)

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    • I feel like I definitely do the same as far as switching back and forth between sharing a ton, and then finally thinking “what the heck am I doing?! I’m over this!” and then I don’t share hardly anything. It’s such a fine line, isn’t it? Thank you for talking this out with me! xo

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  35. Nailed it! I think we just have to figure out what we feel good about and feel good about it. Of course I’d love higher instagram numbers but I refuse to curate it to within an inch of its life and not post the things I want to post. What the eff is Meerkat? And no I will not learn it just to attend a free media dinner at your restaurant. Thank you for sharing your thoughts because it can be SO much! The times I’ve forgotten to take instagram photos are the times I’ve really enjoyed myself. And I think there needs to be more of those! Last year I was at a blogging conference and someone was finally able to break down goal setting in a way that I finally could truly embrace. The speaker said to figure out what you want and make that your goal, but it doesn’t have to be traffic numbers or money goals. It’s how will you be happiest! More time with family, less stress in general, etc. Part of my goal is to always enjoy what I am doing. And if I’m not enjoying it, I start figuring out why. Would me not Snapchatting much hurt some brand opportunities? Maybe. But am I happy that I don’t feel the stress of growing my Snapchat score? YES! Social media can suck it.

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    • hahaha, I have NO idea what Meerkat is! I can’t hang with that! I LOVE the idea of setting a happiness goal, thank you so much for sharing that with me! Sadly, I’ve never even thought of a goal being simply put into a happiness measurement. Thank you, Sharon! xoxo

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  36. Yes, yes, and YES!

    1) In a recent effort to really ramp up my social media, it has started to feel like a second full-time job, instead of something I do for fun. And where’s the joy in that? I still enjoy it, but in terms of marketing myself/my blog/etc., it takes some of the fun out of the process for sure.

    2) The thing I grapple with all the time is the rose-colored lens that envelopes peoples’ social media posts. As a blogger, and more importantly as a human being, I am fully aware that people are predominantly showcasing the good, while their realities are far from perfect. I want to stay positive, and yet also convey my authentic self, while also not falling prey to the “wow, their life is so amazing all of the time, I wish mine was like that” vicious cycle. It’s a delicate balance that I’m working hard to maintain!

    3) My mom is a child psychologist. You and I are kindred souls. :)

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    • haha, definitely kindred souls! I also really don’t love the rose colored lens of everything on social, it’s almost like the new-age version of people comparing themselves to magazines in a lot of ways. Here’s to staying authentic and finding our voice! xoxo

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  37. YES. I talk about this all the time with my sister/business partner. I’m the voice of our small business and as much as I love to share thoughts and taking photos, the pressure is there. I took a week’s break recently and I’m now back feeling clearer than ever. Taking a break and putting the phone aside really helps. Especially, instead of wanting to take a photo and post about a particular moment, we get to really embrace and enjoy it ourselves. That’s important.

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    • I totally agree, I feel like anytime we travel somewhere where we don’t have cell service, it’s weird at first, but then we come back to it and I secretly wish it would stay gone!

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  38. Oh man. I’ve been feeling this so MUCH lately. Social media has officially tired me out. I have several social-media-related struggles, one of which is, exactly as you said: spending 20 minutes trying to “think of the perfect caption.” The saddest part is, I DELETE it half the time because I decide it’s not strengthening my brand. To build my brand without going crazy, I THINK the key is: more focus, fewer posts. Higher quality, less quantity. I think it’s EXTRA tough for creatives because all we want to do is make and try everything and then share it with the world. Sooo, here’s my personal goal: post something RELEVANT once per week on the same day. Like Sami up there, I hate that I have to do each platform separately, but I don’t like it when tags don’t carry over or images become links. It’s a pain, but I have yet to find an app that shares across platforms effectively. It’s going to be really hard resisting the temptation to post pics of my dog or some random, cute thing I’m working on, but LESS time on my phone sounds like a great trade-off. THANK YOU for sharing this…it’s always nice to know that others—especially people you admire—have the same struggle. :)

    Reply
    • I do the same thing with my captions!! You are definitely not alone. I also have to be the freaky girl that sits quietly in the corner to get enough concentration for it, oh the irony. I totally agree with you on quality over quantity, and here’s to us for finding our perfect balance! xoxo

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  39. This is exactly how I have been feeling lately too, Ash! And you’ve worded it so much better than I ever could. I definitely feel pressure to make sure I document the more ‘interesting’ things that happen in my day, so that I can keep up with everybody else and it is completely exhausting. Sometimes I just want to experience something without feeling obligated to pick up my phone and capture it. So, I’m right there with you on this one! And really appreciate you shining light on this topic.

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    • Absolutely! Good news is we at least get to hang out with each other outside of social media every now and then so you can experience the gloriousness that is my karaoke power arm ; ) love ya, b!

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  40. Preach! I have recently revamped my social media efforts to be more intentional about my branding. Although I am happy with the direction I am going, I also now feel a bit more tired to keep up. Before I would just post whatever I wanted to without much thought; now I have to make sure it is staged beautifully, lighted right, and colorful. I also decided to not use my baby’s image in my blog social media platforms. Sometimes, I do want to unplug. I also try to think how life would be like without social media. Would we have a lot of extra time?

    Thank you for writing this. It’s always nice to share these thoughts because you realize you are not alone in this sentiment. I say go with your gut. I agree with Periscope; it just ain’t happening for me. I feel the same about twitter. I ain’t gonna tweet now because I am just not feeling it. It’s instagram and facebook for me, but these days mainly instagram. It has helped me feel more at ease since I have accepted that I can’t master everything and I am okay with that.

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    • Branding social media totally takes 200 times more effort, but I agree that being intentional does pay off in the long run. I also agree with Twitter, I secretly hope it fades away sooner than later! Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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  41. YES. I feel like too much social media can leave creatives burnt out and uninspired. I recently started an Instagram break because I realized I was concentrating too much on follower numbers and creating what other people wanted to see.

    Take time to rest and enjoy the moment, you deserve it!

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  42. “I also would rather not post anything, then to post something fake from my day pretending like everything is bows and bubble gum when really I feel like throwing the nearest macaron.” YES!!

    As a small business owner/blogger as well, I know it’s important to keep up with my audience, but trying to be on everything all at once is way too overwhelming. I’ve got a full-time job in addition to my two side hustles, so remembering to post to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Google + (the only 4 I focus on and even then G+ usually gets left out) daily, nevermind multiple times a day! And I’m not one of those people who can set up IFTTT to automatically share from Facebook to Instagram or vice versa because I want to make sure things are tagged appropriately for each platform… it’s a nightmare.

    Do you use any scheduling tools to help?

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    • I worked two jobs for most of Sugar & Cloth until this past October, so I feel your struggle on that! We definitely use scheduling tools, but I try to be careful with them, because I want to have the time to interact back with people commenting, as well as have relevant content, but they’re definitely a saving grace in some isntances!

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  43. I think it’s too easy to get caught up with the pressure of EVERYTHING – the clock, social media, yourself. There is always something you can be doing more of / less of / better / smarter, but at the end of the day I just try to take a step back and look at the big picture.

    I take time to be grateful for what I have and where I am, while asking myself what I still want to work towards. If I don’t feel I have something necessary/fun/relevant to post on social media, I don’t. I never force it and I try to just be real and authentic to myself and my brand. I know what my message is, so all I try to do is convey that in whatever way feels right.

    I think we put the pressure on ourselves more than anything…will people really notice (or care) if I don’t take a really nice picture of that super cool event I went to? Chances are they won’t know that I “missed” posting about it.

    Just my two cents anyway ;)

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  44. You said exactly what I’ve been feeling lately! As a new blogger social media is great for feeling connected but there are so many new ones. How does anyone keep up?! On weekends, I’d rather just be in the moment like you and not worry about photo opps.

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    • Weekends are definitely “me” time compared to any other, and weekend nights are pretty much totally off limits, especially when hanging out with friends and family. I have NO idea how people keep up, I’m clearly not one of them, haha! xoxo

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  45. I completely understand! I’ve never been big on social media, but as a new blogger, I feel compelled to put everything I do out there, just so I can get one more follower.

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  46. This past summer with my girls home has been a good breather for me. I’ve still had to keep the behind-the-scenes of my business going but social media was one of the first things to go. I did the bare minimum and enjoyed a little free time with my kids. You deserve a break every once in a while, too! I’m sure your readers will understand and will easily relate to you. Hugs!

    Reply

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