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10 Reasons Why Instagram Is The New High School

10 Reasons Why Instagram Is The New High School

And here we had thought that high school was over; that we could make or break our lives without worrying about what others thought o us. Hardly had we anticipated the meteoric rise of Instagram, the new (and improved) high school. Undeniably, it looks good from the outside. The filter and angles make you see different perspectives but soon one realises that the quagmire of crab-like vindictiveness is onto you. And back to school you go. This is how it unfolds.

1. Your Popularity is Based on Likes

You thinks that you are educated, aware and that human nature cannot get the better of you? You will be not-so-pleasantly surprised to see you craving for likes. You realise that these ‘likes’ up your popularity meter. It is no more a question of mere acceptance but that of getting fame and recognition on the basis of these clicks.

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2. There are Cliques

Once you enter into the world of Instagram deeply, you realise that there are age-specific, region-specific and interest-specific groups. These groups are close-knit and they stick together. Reposting and shouting-out to each other, they help in creating an elitist system where some members are more revered than others.

3. They are Hard to be Accepted into

Going on from the idea that the number of likes and followers are important and being part of a group is even more so to be ‘suggested’ as a user of Instagram, it is mighty difficult to become accepted into these virtual groups. This is especially true when you are doing something different and no to the taste of others.

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4. Instagram is Only Partially True

While we use the app to showcase our lives and express happiness, we are also aware that we only show what we want people to know. This is in fact true of all social media. It demonstrates the parties, food and all the places we visit but it also has silences with regard to fights, troubles, heartbreaks and despair.

5. Posts are Filtered

With the reality being only half-baked, the perception of reality also becomes heavily skewed and more aesthetic. Life in general is normal and ordinary but Instagram has the ability of making them unreal and too beautiful to be true. Sounds like high school? We think so too. You go deeper and you understand the partial treatment you find.

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6. It is a Cauldron of Jealousy and Self-Esteem Issues

Similar to high school, the social structure makes it a tough place to battle with acceptance by oneself and by others. Looking at the likes and followers of others makes it a very commonplace affair to be envious by the popularity of others. Thousands and thousands of likes can cripple creativity when ones own post rack up mere numbers.

7. lt is a Most Superficial App

It does not add to productivity or create any kind of revenue but all it does it attract attention. This is particularly true of how high school functions. While it provides you with a lot of practise to deal with real life, it is not real life. One can use this app to reach out to an audience, but it can equally open you up to new people if and only if you have the right connections. One would think that Instagram has democratised art or photography but it is not so because of my following point.

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8. You Have to Have a Theme

Much like everything that a structured society follows, Instagram pretends to be a creative space that allows freedom. One realises that this is not true when one looks at accounts that do really well on the popularity charts. It is expected that your account must have a single-minded focus and a quirky enough theme that you have to mindlessly keep on posting about even if you are bored to death of it. This surely kills motivation when anything out of your chosen theme crops up on the feeds and racks up single digits.

9. It Encourages Aloofness

With such hoards of problems that dog an ordinary or lay user on this ‘social’ app, one finds no other way but to absolutely stop caring about likes, followers and shout outs. Which is defeating the purpose of it being a social networking site. Remind anyone of school times? When tired of all the drama, people just chose to reach back into their shells and do their own thing? The Instagram version of that is the lack of use of hashtags and just putting up things for the love of photography and not to seek inspiration.

10. The Grapevine

Lastly, High School had a perfect way of communicating gossip and rumours. This is the modern version of the ‘Burn Book’. Instagram is the best way of keeping tabs on the lives of others. Noticing comments and likes would reveal a lot about our near ones and lots of people use it to their benefit, continuing the plague of bitchiness and overall voyeurism. Not to say that Instagram is not open to everyone. It is. But one cannot deny that if you can crack the code, you can pass the test.

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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