2020 has been a sh*t show like I have never seen. You’d think that we’d be good coming mid-year, but no. It is the gift that keeps on giving. As things get worse and worse, you’d assume they’d reach an all time low and that things could only go better. Finger’s crossed. I am at a point where I am now blasé and looking at things I will not longer care about in 2020.
If 2020 is not trying, why should I care, am I right?! Especially as some of them were part of my resolutions for 2020. Decisions I had made back in January that I may not have held. I mean, the pandemic and lockdown did come in the way, so bare with me, it’s been a bit more difficult than expected.
Engagement on Instagram
Do what I say, not what I do, am I right?! I have talked about Instagram extensively on this blog. How to increase engagement on Instagram, why you are not growing, why I am changing my approach to the app and more.
While engagement was fairly good on my new Instagram account, the pandemic killed it. Fair and square. Even though I still get a fair amount of comments, likes count is pathetic and it hurts. I am not gonna pretend otherwise.
Working hard on your content, curating your Instagram feed, spending time on taking photos to see just a few likes is disheartening. No one wants to dedicate themselves to content creation to see it ignored or hidden by the app. Not even 10% of my audience sees my content.
I do not want to become a full-time influencer. It is a hobby, a way to be creative outside of my job. From now on, Instagram engagement is one of the things I will no longer care about in 2020. If a picture picks up, amazing; if it bombs, never mind.
I will not allow an app (whose owner is too obsessed with making money and wooing Republicans to ban hate speech and misinformation from his platform) to dictate my life.
Creating content for others
As Instagram changed, content requirements did too, follower’s expectations as well. Instant spontaneous content does not work anymore. It needs to be curated, colorful and aspirational. People go to Instagram for inspiration. Thus, a lot of content creators have shifted their content towards that goal.
Clearly, a few aesthetics grow while others don’t. Travel, floral backgrounds and minimalist neutrals are the way to go if you want to grow. And they are gorgeous aesthetics. However, not affordable nor achievable to everyone. And again, that is not a reproach.
But it leaves the spectrum of content fairly small if you want to grow. Since only a few aesthetics do seem to work. So for a long time, I went on with the floral theme. It was easy in London, not so much in New York. No floral displays there. Never mind. I like the city vibes just as much.
However, the more I created content, the more I felt like I was creating for others and no longer for me. Let me explain. Having in mind which aesthetics bring growth, I felt that I had to create content to fit one of those particular aesthetics so that my followers and other users would love it.
Engage with my content or even decide to follow me.
I wanted my Instagram to grow so I created content that I knew people would love, forgetting myself in the process. From now on, people’s expectations of my content is one of the things I will no longe care about in 2020. I will take photos I love, find my own aesthetics, create content that I enjoy creating. And no longer will I create content to please my audience.
It started as a creative outlet for myself. Followers are a bonus. It starts with creating content you love. Then, the audience that loves that content will come.
My weight and its fluctuations
I remember in my resolutions for 2020, I said I wanted to exercise more or at least be healthier. Or try to stick to a fitness routine. Although I did have a great start of the year and managed to be very consistent with the gym, COVID-19 messed with everything.
Moving to NYC turned out fairly easy. However, a change of city and lifestyle lead to a gain in weight. That is how it is. And not just one or two kilograms. Some of my jeans and trousers did not fit me anymore. Not that I was too sad about it, as I mostly wear dresses anyways.
But still… I did not like the idea. When I weighted myself after Christmas, I did gasp. After that, I had signed up to the gym and started to exercise thrice weekly and eat healthier.
However, as the pandemic hit, gym closed, working out outdoors became risky, I said goodbye to that newly found healthy lifestyle. I can see it today. But, I have decided that I should not care about my weight anymore in 2020. Not only is it just a number but it also does not mean anything.
Muscle is heavier than fat so working out would most likely not lead to weight loss but muscle mass gain. I want to go back to exercising, going to the gym (when they will reopen) and eating healthier (with one cheat day a week). However, my weight will no longer be a focus nor a worry.
Other people’s life
This is something that has been haunting me for quite a long time. I compare myself a lot to friends and former classmates. We went to the same school, graduated together and have the same degree. Therefore, we should have similar careers, no?
Well, as it turns out, no. Not at all. Everyone is different. We all have our own personality, expectations of life and cannot get along with everybody. A job at a huge company may seem amazing until you realize you actually are not a good fit. Or you may have a job that does not pay as much as you hoped it will.
How could you know anyway? We all think the grass is greener next door. Me included. I had written about it last year actually. So yes, I still do tend to compare myself to my former classmates. I see where they are at and feel that I did not go that far. Or that I am not very successful in the end.
Sometimes I feel like others are being more successful than me (and I am very happy for them), but that I am left far behind and it hurts. Of course, I am not. I know now. I made different choices, I have a different life, therefore we cannot compare.
But it is still hard to stop comparing, accept that we all follow a different path and that there is no one definition of success. From now on, one of the things I will no longer can about in 2020 is how other progress in their professional life.
Rephrasing. I care about my friends’ successes as I am always happy for them. However, I will not compare myself to them nor will I assess my successes against theirs. I realize some time ago that I am pretty happy with how my career turned out, despite a very rocky start!
My social awkwardness
I hate small talks. I tried but I cant. That is how it is. I do not know how to handle small talks, I find them useless, a waste of time for everyone, not productive at all. They do not bring anything. Especially if they revolve around things I have absolutely no interests in.
When I meet someone, I need to know that the conversation can go beyond the necessary socially acceptable small talks. Otherwise, I will lose interest and not bother getting involved in the conversation or potential friendships that may come out of it.
That is why I have such a hard time with making friends in the US. It is all about small talks and superficial relationships. You have a lot of acquaintances but not that many close friends. As opposed to France where people only involve themselves if they see a promise of strong friendship. Probably why Americans feel French people are so rude.
I manage to make really good friends in the US after all. Because I stepped out of my comfort zone, went to meet ups, got in touch with people on Instagram (I would have never dared some time ago). And then I followed up, made sure that night out was not just a one off. Because I also suck as communicating via texts.
Perseverance does pay off, especially if you find people who have similar interests. Politics, literature, economics, international affairs, are topics I love to debate on. Nails, fitness and fashion not so much.
Ironic since I am a fashion blogger. I do love to talk about how fast fashion is not sustainable but unavoidable for those who cannot afford sustainable fashion. But I have accepted that I suck as small talks, that I may seem awkward at first and that I am just no looking for acquaintances but actual friendships.
That is it for those five things I will no longer care about!
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What are those things you will no longer care about in 2020? If you have any? Are there any things you feel you give too much important to?
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See you soon,
You make some really great points here. I think 2020 is definitely the year to make changes. So much has changed that is out of our control, so we might as well go with it. It’s good that you want to create Instagram content that you like. It’s no fun taking photos if they don’t interest you. You have to enjoy what you do!
I enjoyed every word of your candid delivery. Cheers to writing exactly the way you see it!
Love this post! I went off Instagram for months because I was constantly checking my notifications to see how many likes I’ve got and it was taking a toll on me so like you, I didn’t bother much about it in 2020.
I can relate to not enjoying making small talk too. I moved to NYC and find it so hard to make friends and maybe that’s why I still don’t have friends here haha.
In short, I can relate to your post a lot and thank you for sharing! I enjoyed reading it 🙂