One hour and forty-eight minutes. Last time I checked that was the average time I spent a day on Instagram in the past week. I knew I had wasted time absentmindedly scrolling through the Instagram explore page, a quicksand pit that has consistently swallowed up my time, but seeing the actual number with a graph to back it up was a humiliating wake up call.
On my Instagram story I put up a quick message saying I would be majorly cutting down how much time I spend on the app and that anyone who needs to contact me should do so through email or text. Once the story went through I held my finger on the Instagram icon until the whole screen shook. Then I tapped the fatal “x” button, deleting it from my home screen.
The trimester is ending at my high school this week and my grades aren’t terrible, but they aren’t where I would like them to be. This will be the first time I have something in the C range as a final grade. Je ne parle pas francais bien.
My study habits have been terrible this trimester, especially in the last couple weeks. Every day I would go home and have a snack while watching shows. Then I would find something to distract me until 9, 10, or 11 at night when I would start my homework. Those distracting activities included cleaning my room, playing the ukulele and, yes, scrolling through that damn explore page.
More than a month ago I gave up on Snapchat. Keeping up with streaks became a chore and it’s obviously a tactic to trick users into being on the app everyday. I could see through Snapchat, but Instagram had me in the palm of their hand. I still had Snapchat app though, so I banished that from my phone and while I was at it, I killed off Netflix.
I’ll still use Netflix and Instagram but I will use my desktop, or re-download when I need to make a post and then delete the app again. I hope that I can stick to this plan and that it will make me more aware of how I spend my time.
I’ve been without Instagram for a day now and I’ve noticed myself trying to go on it as a mindless escape from my responsibilities. To get my fix of phone addiction I’ve been on Pinterest and VSCO more, where the content is less addictive. I’ve traded in my cigarettes for a nicotine patch and I’m trying to get my lungs clean again.