On November 11, 2019, I started a month-long social media detox. What I didn’t anticipate was not wanting to log back on each platform. I’ve gotten a lot of questions as to why I’m quitting Instagram for 2020, and this post is to explain it all.
Let me preface this post by saying that I don’t think social media is a bad thing if it is something you enjoy. I don’t hate it or think it is the devil.
Also, this decision has nothing to do with the love for the community that has built over the years. This is strictly a personal decision from lots of reflecting and thinking about how I’m going to make my dream life even better.
In my announcement post on Instagram, I didn’t get to dive into all of the information I wanted to share due to character limits.
To elaborate more on my decision, I’ve broken it up into six main reasons why I’m quitting Instagram for 2020.
I honestly find it very difficult to put everything into words to explain how different my life has been since logging off.
My hope for you is that you at least try a week off of Instagram just to get a taste of what life is like without it.
UPDATE: On December 30, 2020, I decided to quit social media for good, and I wrote a post explaining why if you’d like to check it out, too! [Read post now]
Why I’m Quitting Instagram for 2020
1 // Aligning with my priorities
For the past year and a half, I’ve felt out of alignment with my purpose and priorities. My time away from social media helped me see that my daily actions didn’t align with my true priorities.
When I took the time to journal and sort through things, I reset my priorities to align better with the life I want to live.
I set new goals, focused on finishing looming projects, made time for family and friends, and most of all, set out to really get to know myself and my desires.
My priorities, based on my actions, went from looking like social media ruled my life to the following new list of priorities [in order of importance]:
- My health – mental and physical
- Loving and being present with my husband
- Connecting with friends and family on a consistent basis
- Creating the business of my dreams
These aren’t all of my priorities, but they are the most important to me.
From there, I envisioned what each priority looked like, the actions I would take, and what my focus would be in each area.
When I finished each list, I realized Instagram wasn’t a part of this list. Honestly, I was surprised because, before my social media detox, it took up anywhere from 1-3 HOURS A DAY!
If you looked at my actions, you’d think Instagram was my #1 priority.
Realigning my priorities helped me see the most important aspects of my life, the distractions keeping me from them, and what I could take off of my plate to truly enjoy living my best life.
2 // Focusing on my IMPOSSIBLE goal for 2020
For 2020, I decided to set an IMPOSSIBLE goal for my business. Every action I take has to get me closer to achieving this goal, or it doesn’t happen.
Because Instagram is a major distraction for me, I have chosen to work towards this goal without it.
Yes, I could absolutely implement Instagram into this goal, but I wouldn’t make the necessary progress I need to achieve this goal. Instagram would honestly slow me down, and I don’t want that.
Keeping complete focus on my business is a top priority for me, so not having Instagram as a distraction for this year is how I’ve chosen to proceed.
3 // Living in the present moment
Before my social media detox, I realized how much I ghosted people who were sitting in the same room as me.
[Ghosted means to passively listen to someone while being on your phone and not being attentive to the conversation. At least, that is how I interpret it.]
I halfheartedly paid attention to my surroundings, and once I broke free of social media, I realized how awful of a person I had been to people I love!
After I realized this, I intentionally put my phone in another room, kept it on silent more often than not, and went places without it.
Once I grew comfortable without this distraction, I realized how amazing living in the present truly is!
It was easy to want to live in the present and just be with those I love without distractions.
The walks I take are incredible because I notice my surroundings and appreciate them more.
My FAVORITE part about living in the present moment is truly getting to know myself and being curious about my thoughts. I am getting to know myself so well, and I’m falling in love with myself.
I’m no longer avoiding things that come up in the present moment, and I LOVE IT!
4 // To gain more time doing what I love
Did you know that you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do?
It’s true! My life coach taught me this a few months ago, and it has been LIFE-CHANGING, to say the least!
The only thing you have to do is accept the consequences of not doing something. If you don’t mind that, then feel free to drop it completely.
For me, when I weighed the pros and cons of logging off of Instagram, the only con that came up was not being connected with my community in the same way. My primary connection would become connecting through email, which is something I already enjoy doing!
I want to share the pros list of logging off because the weight of it needs to be shown to show you how it outweighed the cons.
Pro List for Quitting Instagram:
- Removing the pressure to show up, even when there was nothing to say.
- Remove any stress and overwhelm from consuming any stories or posts.
- Gaining 1-3 HOURS A DAY to really focus on achieving my goal and living my best life.
- Being able to be 100% present in my life.
- Saving my creative energy for writing new content on the blog.
- Not having to worry about the vanity metrics of growing my numbers or wondering why Instagram didn’t show my post to as many people as they did with the previous post.
- Bringing more authenticity to my community by stepping away from Instagram.
- Spending more quality time with my husband.
- Not having to worry about photographing events, such as my wedding anniversary or Christmas. I can just enjoy the moments.
- Staying aligned with my priorities.
- Focusing on my personal development without the social media comparison game.
- Reducing external influence on my life. [I’m someone who is easily influenced by other people’s actions. Not having that influence helps me stay aligned with who I really am.]
There were a few more points I could make, but I think you get the picture.
It all really comes down to being the best version of myself, and that is why I’m quitting Instagram in 2020 in order to do so.
5 // Reduce my anxiety and improve my mental health
I’ve briefly mentioned this a few times, but social media – regardless of the platform – increases my anxiety.
From the stories to posts, messages, groups, etc., it all piles up into an anxiety-filled experience for me.
Since stepping away from social media this past November, I’ve been able to breathe better and reduce the amount of new gray hairs I get.
I’ve doubled down on my personal development and self-care, and I’m noticing a large improvement within myself.
By freeing up my time to do these things for myself that are extremely important, I am becoming more confident and increasing my capacity to do things every day that I enjoy.
Seeing the change only encourages me to keep working at it.
6 // To eliminate my smartphone addiction
When I heard someone say that smartphones are becoming an extension of the human body, I was disgusted. I’m not sure why that feeling overwhelmed me, but I knew I had to make a change.
A few hours after that, I took everything off my phone I didn’t need. This included:
- social media apps
- search engine apps, including Safari, Pinterest, and YouTube
- FaceTime [I never use it.]
- All of the unnecessary apps that come with the phone.
I did leave Pandora and Podcasts on my phone because those both serve a purpose – Pandora helps me go to sleep when I’m having trouble falling asleep, and Podcasts help me learn in the car.
I also have a weather app to check the weather on the go, and two bill pay apps, because they are much more efficient than other ways of making a payment.
Needless to say, I’m no longer picking up my phone for the fun of it unless someone calls or texts me, which is exactly how I believe things should be.
It honestly bothers me that Instagram only provides the full features of a phone app, and I feel is a large factor in why I became addicted to my phone.
Now that I’ve broken up with my smartphone – outside of the remaining apps that do provide value and efficiency – I feel free! I can leave my phone behind when I’m running a quick errand or going for a walk.
I enjoy how I spend my time so much more than I did previous to November 11, 2019, and I cannot wait to see how things continue to improve!
Final thoughts about why I’m quitting Instagram
Letting go of Instagram for 2020 was not an easy decision, but I know it is the right one for me. This year is going to be insanely beautiful, and I don’t want to waste a minute of it!
Now that you know why I’m quitting Instagram for 2020, I hope you will give it a try! It doesn’t have to be for the entire year, but at least give it a week or two or longer!
You may feel completely different about Instagram compared to me, and that is okay! I still encourage you to be intentional with your time and how you use the app.
Hopefully, this post has connected with you and helped you understand why I’m quitting Instagram for now. I cannot say that I’ll never come back or that I’ll for sure be off for the entire year.
This is just where I am currently, and I want to share that with you.
There are many things to be gained from this break, including me providing more valuable, action-based content where it matters most – here on The Tannehill Homestead.
2020 is all about up-leveling my best life and creating a life I’ve dreamed of for so long! I’m taking action towards big things, and you’ll 1000% benefit from it! I promise!
Now that I have explained my decision for why I’m quitting Instagram, I’d love to know if there is something you’re removing from your plate this year to shake things up a bit.
Let me know below in the comments!
2021 UPDATE: I decided to quit social media altogether. Read about my decision and how you could do the same, too!