18 May 2022

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Instagram and the endless wastage of time

  • By Ahmed Abdullah

   As much as I loved seeing Ronaldo score the same goal over and over again in every other video on the explore page of my Instagram account, I recently realized how much time got wasted while doing so.

A university student and an aspiring footballer in his early 20’s trying to come up in a world of sheer competition, I also fell prey to the social media addiction which I was protected from, for a long period of my life and like every other youngster of my generation when I did get under its hold, it didn’t take long for me to realize that it is a slow poison which affects you in its due time.

Out of curiosity, I made myself an Instagram account 2, 3 years ago and since then I’ve always felt more exhausted and less productive.

Now people might have different opinions on this matter. Some people might say that it’s a great platform for social interactions, some might say it’s a good way to learn how to communicate and similarly some might say that it’s a complete waste of time.

While I don’t categorize myself in either of the category mentioned above, I am of a simple opinion that the excess usage of anything can prove to be fatal but if and when used in moderation, anything can prove to be beneficial.  A few months ago, while feeling extremely burdened by the fact that I was spending a lot of time on my social media, Instagram to be specific, I decided to disconnect myself from the online world and deactivated my Instagram account.

It felt unusual at first, my friends started calling to ask what happened and some even complained and asked me to reactivate my account so that they could share posts and videos and pictures that they normally did and for a while I even got convinced too but I was able to stick to my decision and felt very glad afterwards.

The first few days did feel a bit off but afterwards I felt more comfortable and more available to my family, my friends in real life and most importantly to myself. I got so used to not being on Instagram that it became the new normal for me.

On the flipside, there was something I liked about Instagram when I decided to deactivate my account i.e. the fact that my close friends acknowledged my presence on the platform and immediately noticed when I went off board and rushed to check up on me.

This was something very insightful for me and made me realize that people do notice your presence and absence when there’s mutual care and respect between each other.

Anyways after 4 months off the platform and a careful analysis and reflection of my activities and preferences and the continuous insistence of my friends, I finally reactivated my account but this time with a different approach i.e. I balanced my activities on and off the platform, divided my activities in real and online life equally and took a positive approach towards the usage of Instagram.

So far, my return on Instagram has been very pleasant and what I’d like to say or advice to all the youngsters out there is that moderation is the key to a healthy life, both online and offline.