This week I'm chatting about the joy of missing out, curating your social media to be more positive and the happy side of social media with Elaine (she/her), an artist.
Elaine is a stay at home Mum and an artist. She's always been creative and has been fortunate to have had time to explore this much further in the last year. She draws and/or paints daily. Her time whilst painting and drawing is for her, where she can think, relax, regroup and take the time to look after herself and her mental health.
Find Elaine as @sparklypainter on Instagram.
I hang out on Instagram.
Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/socialmediaforhumans)
- [Hawke] Hello, and welcome to Social Media for Humans. The podcast that empowers you to do social differently. Your host, Alexis Bushnell, and her guests discuss their experience of social media as business owners, users, and ultimately humans, with insights and advice to help you find an effective and ethical strategy that works for you. Grab yourself a drink and join the conversation. - Hello, hello. I am here with wonderful, talented, Elaine. Tell me, who are you and what do you do? - So I am Elaine. My pronouns are she/her. I'm a stay at home mom, and I'm an artist. I spend a lot of time drawing, painting and creating. That's me in a nutshell. - And sharing it on Instagram. Very talented. - [Elaine] And sharing it, yes. - So you are using sort of social media at the minute as a medium to sort of share your art, yes? - [Elaine] Yes. - And how is that going for you? Was it scary initially to sort of put it out there? - It was an interesting thought process for me. I'm relatively new to Instagram. I started using Instagram because a social group that my son attends use it for advertising rides and things. So my child on Instagram, I want to know about that. Then my art began to take more of a focus in my day-to-day life. You know, creating things, drawing things. And I wanted somewhere to share that. And I actually felt more confident presenting that to strangers than I did to my friends. So I then created my Instagram art account where I share all of my work whether it's good or not so good, you know. There are days when I go, "Oh, I'm not sure." But you know, I think it has to be real. It has to be not just the good stuff. I don't filter very well on social media. I'm just like, "There it is. "Today this is it, it was great "Today, this is probably not so good, but I've done it." And that's really what I use my Instagram account for. It's about sharing what I've done, the good stuff, the not so good stuff. And getting feedback from like-minded people, from people who might have an interest in art, who might create art, or just quite like the look of that today. "That's quite nice, I like that, it's good." You know, and for me, that felt safer than perhaps showing it to somebody I know well, and them going, "Eww." Does that make sense or is that just a really weird thing to do? - No, I think that's understandable because especially if it's something you care a lot about if you show it to somebody you really care about and they're like, Oh, I don't know about this. You, you feel like you've lost a lot more than if some random stranger on the internet is like, well I don't know if that's very good because your invested in that relationship aren't you. I think, I think that isn't understandable. - It feels a lot more personal if I show it to somebody that I know and care about and they go, you know, and yes, I want honest feedback but it's less invasive perhaps getting that or somebody just completely ignores it. Well, ignore it. If you don't like it bypass that's okay with me as well. Whereas I think in real life, I would take all of those negative things right to the heart. I don't like it. - Yeah. - For me, Instagram is a really positive place. It's a place I share stuff that I like that that has made me happy. And if somebody else likes it, that's great. You know, I tend to shy away from anything controversial you know, because there's enough of that in real life and I don't want that everywhere I look. So for me, I use it as a positive place to go to share stuff, to look for things that that's a good idea. I quite like that. Oh, I could have a go at something similar. That for me is probably the key focus of my Instagram. - Yeah. Yeah. It's interesting you say that because there's definitely there is definitely a dark side to Instagram. So do you feel like your sort of you choosing to put out positive stuff and engage with other people who are sort of focused on more creative aesthetic putting beauty out into the world do you think that sort of brings more of that to you? Do you feel like you're - absolutely - a community of positive art people? - Yes. And I'm not looking and you're right. I'm sure there is a dark and less pleasant side to Instagram. I think there are on all the social media platforms, but for me, I'm only engaging and looking for what brings me pleasure. And I hope that the people that I'm engaging with, the community that that's building up around the work that I put out there, the contacts that I make all have a similar kind of personality. They're not people looking to bring that negativity into it. They're looking to enjoy things as well. You know, they share their art. If I don't particularly like that piece I don't have to be negative about it but I don't have to be effusive either. You know, and you're right. I think looking for the good brings the good back I don't go digging deeper. I tend to avoid Twitter pretty much all the time because it's just one rant after another. It's angry and it's aggressive and I don't need that in my life. And if that sounds a bit flimsy, you know I'm well based in reality, but sometimes I don't want to be faced with that every single second. So I go onto Instagram, this is the good stuff. This is the stuff I enjoy. I can get my news I can get my other stuff from other platforms and that's fine, but this is what I'm doing here. - Yeah. Yeah. No, I think that's really important. I do think there is especially like Twitter where that show, I was saying on a previous podcast with my friend Hawke actually about how Twitter's like trending topics. I kind of wish you could hide them because it's so easy you see something pop up in the trending topics inevitably, it's a disaster. All of the comments in there are inevitably horrific and you just get drawn into it because it's like, "ooh it's there" popped up. - It's like a vortex. It just pulls you in. So again, I have to have Twitter because it's a way of communication from my son's school. So I don't want to, but you know I use it as a way of keeping track on that. Anything else I'm like, just push it away. I don't need that because you just say, sometimes I get lulled in. What's that? Then I look and I think why have I done this? Why am I doing this? And then I can feel myself, either being frustrated or angry or looking at comments and thinking I'm furious at these people for even putting that out there. And if they really believe it what sort of society is this? It escalates. I'm really cross with these people. So yeah, Twitter is not the place for me. I know some people love it. And actually I think some people enjoy that whole kind of it's almost, I want to say it's just trolling but it's not, it's actually, it's deeper than that. It's just being nasty to get that rouse and I don't like that. I don't like it, it's not for me. - Yeah, no, I think it is healthy to be able to recognise that you have that reaction to it. And to be able to say like, I don't want to feel this way. I need to not engage with that platform because I think a lot of people especially I think with Twitter, have that feeling of if I don't use Twitter, then how, like I will not be educated on these things. I won't know what's happening in the world. I won't know the news first. I won't, you know, be there. And I think like sometimes it's okay to not know first it's okay to just be ignorant for a little bit. - Just let that filter in as it, you know, let's face it. There's so many different ways of picking up the news or world events now. Yeah I don't need to be that first person there it comes through anyway. You know, however you choose to pick that. So for me, I'm like, yeah, I'm keeping them at arms length because it's better for me - I think very wise. - And I find sometimes with Facebook, I use Facebook and Instagram predominantly but even with Facebook now, there are times when I think I just can't be doing this. It's becoming again and particularly over the last couple of years, but very, very political you know, we all have our own political opinions. I'm not against those at all but I think there's a time and a place for airing those. And I don't think a slanging match on Facebook or in a group here, or there is necessarily constructive or the right place for that. So I quite like recently, I've seen lots of these little pop-up groups, pop up groups for a week whilst there's perhaps been a challenge or a course or something that I've signed up for, great. And after a week it's all gone away. And then I don't have that I have a little bit of a, I don't want to leave at the end. So if they take it away because I think I might miss something and that I know is not good for me so at the end of it, if they take it away then I can draw that line under it and I'm not going, Oh, I've left that. And I could be missing something that matters. Invariably, I'm not but I have to be very careful not to kind of slip into that or I should be part of this and this and this and this because suddenly I don't need to be parts of all of that. I need to select what I want to be involved in what motivates me and then move on from that. - Yeah. Yeah. That is an interesting sort of side to that I hadn't thought about when it comes to the sort of pop-up groups, because they are a really common thing now for people running challenges and events and things like that. But I hadn't thought of that sort of side to it of like sort of avoiding the FOMO to a degree. That's interesting. Yeah. - Just do it and then it's gone and then you're not hanging on to it because I tend to use. For me Facebook started when I was living abroad and it was a way of letting lots of people know what I was doing and where I was and that was the life I was living at the time. And then it's evolved. It's still tends to be a more personal place for me. So if I'm signing to do something I probably don't want it there forever. But you know, you could have got groups for this and groups for that, and it can get kind of in one and they go, Oh, if you've been in this group I go and have a little look, perhaps I should join. And suddenly I'm thinking I actually really don't need to be part of all of this. I'll just go and have a look. So, you know I tend to find myself trying to work back and go you can stop here because this is what you've got in common perhaps with these people and this is where you can share that and then you can move away. Rather than that, I'll be part of this one and this one and this one and this one and so it goes on and on and on. - I will say that the way I kind of, because I definitely fell down that sort of hole with groups when they initially started becoming quite a big thing. And I joined like all the groups and what what I ended up doing was I turned off notifications for all of them. And then after sort of a few weeks, I was like which groups have I actually checked and which groups have I just not engaged with at all because clearly I don't need the ones that I have not engaged with at all. I'm not missing anything. - No, and that's a really healthy way of doing it, isn't it? And it's a good way to go. What happens is, you know, I know when I go into Facebook there are perhaps three or four groups that I check on. They're the groups that I'm either interested on what's going on in there, or I have more of a day-to-day relationship with just to catch up who's doing what, and that they matter. And the rest of them, they don't really matter. And sometimes I'm like I didn't even know I was still in that group. Oh yeah. Okay well that in itself is telling isn't it either of using this group, it probably doesn't really matter. And of course the last year with COVID it's changed everything again. So lots of things that perhaps, maybe at the beginning of last year would have been relevant going, you know going into the summer. They're not, you know, and actually they're not now because we still don't know what's going to happen. We don't know where we're going to be. And even if things do unlock I'm not going to be kind of rushing out there to be holidaying here, there, and everywhere. I kind of want things to be a bit safe, but again that's a very personal opinion and I know lots of people can't wait to be out doing these things but for me now, I'll just sit back a minute. - Yeah No, I'm with you. I will be sticking with the stay at home vibe generally until things have settled down a little bit more. Yes. - That's one of the things, you know, that that everyday reality that we're dealing with. I don't deal with that through Instagram. My art is my downtime, is my me time. I do that when I know that this one's doing that, and that one's doing. And I can just stop. And it might some days it might be half an hour some days it might be a couple hours, but it's that's leave me alone please. And I don't want that kind of whole everyday chaos through that because it's like, you know this is somewhere that's good for my head my head needs this to be able to keep going and I don't want to bring all of that into my Instagram. And I found it particularly easy to segment those things outside of it. - Yeah. Yeah. I think if you've got, if you are aware that you need that sort of brain space and that sort of, sort of quiet, peaceful pretty beautiful creative time is really benefiting you I think it does make it a bit easier to be like I'm not going to engage in this stuff during this time because I really need this time right now. So yeah, I think it is important but I think some people, I think that it's kind of been complex during lockdown I think for a lot of people, social media, because it has given a lot of people connection and enabled people to sort of support each other but at the same time there's been so I feel like the FOMO and the sort of the pressures of social media have increased sort of the same things. So it has been really it's been interesting for me sort of watch things change and shift and how people are using it and that has been really interesting, but it's definitely been a huge benefit and also a huge sort of difficulty for a lot of people during lockdown. Yeah, yeah. - Yeah. As you say, I think not just Instagram, I think social media as a whole can just kind of suck the life out of you, can't it? Can just take away those good bits. So if you can kind of get your head around this is good for me and this isn't, and I can keep for me it's easy because I just compartmentalise it. This is this, and I'm not bringing those other bits into it, you know? And I know that I need to do that to make it effective you know, for me. And I don't want to be constantly bombarded with all that. Oh, and what about this and this and this. And there is, yeah, there, there is that kind of I can do that here, but I can't do that here. And I definitely can't do it there and it changes also quickly, doesn't it? But the thing that the human contact has been important through lockdown for me, because you know, there there are just days and days and days where my other half comes in from work. That's great. That's an adult, but he's got that stuff going on. But the rest of it, I'm not I've got the dog and a 10 year old. He's great. I, you know, I love them both but they don't necessarily always they don't give me my me-time, you know whereas this is like, look, and I can be online and chat with this person and do that. And it it's just a layer of not necessarily support but just remembering that there is a world out there you know, there are other people and we're all going through this together, but in our own way, you know. What's working for that person really isn't working for me but this really has, you know, for certainly for me in this house, lockdown, hasn't all been bad. There've been some really positive sides of it. So I'm taking that and being happy with it. I know lots of people won't won't have anything good to say about it because it's disrupted their life in measurably, you know but I think you just have to accept that it is different. Isn't it for all of us, you know, this one's okay. This one's not, and yeah - Yeah, yeah. I think that's actually one of the, the sort of dark sides I guess that's come out of social media during the pandemic generally has been this sort of this, however, the sort of the advice and the stuff that's come out, that's like you need to be doing this during lockdown. You need to be dealing with it in this way. You need to think about it like this. There is this one way to be going through it as if everybody is in the same situation. And it's not, it really frustrated me to see that on social media, because I was like this is like an opportunity for social media to come in to its own and be like, well let's have a community of people over here who are dealing with these things and this way and a community over here are people who are dealing with it differently. And these people are dealing with a different thing. And instead it just kind of doubled down on the stuff that we'd had before of like there is one way to do everything and it suits everybody. And if you're not doing it this way, you're doing it wrong. - Yeah. Actually it's very prescriptive. And of course, life, it doesn't work like that. It doesn't work like that for us day to day, let alone now. And yeah, that kind of look, it didn't work last time. And just because things are a bit upside down in the world is not going to work now, you can't bring that back and just keep telling us that. I've found it less again less on Instagram because I'm not looking for that. And if anybody's kind of spouting stuff that says you have to do this and this and this, not really for me. So I'm not going to engage with you or follow you because I don't need to but I found Facebook worse for that. And I found lots of people venting and I'd read it and think, well, golly, first of all it's probably not the most constructive place to put those feelings because actually it's damaging not just to you, but to your family the things that you're putting there you've got to get it off your chest. I get that. But perhaps not in a public domain, you know and then of course, everybody piles in and says you should do this and you should do this. And why, why are you not happy doing because life isn't one size fits all. But I found loads and loads of that on Facebook, which again, made me kind of I'll just step back from it a bit, you know? And I tend to go on now and go to my groups and see what they're doing. And then, you know, step away, I don't need to just be endlessly looking because it, I'll come away feeling worse than I did before I went on. And that's, that's not good. Is it? That's, that's not what it's about. - No, we do not. I do think people find it difficult to step away though. And it is testament to you, I think that you have been able to recognise those things but like, this is not good for me. That is not good for me. And I am going to actually just step away from it and be like, Nope, I'm good. I'll come back to this. Think about it. I'm okay. Yeah. - Yeah. - I think everybody needs to sort of have that conversation with themselves about like how do I feel before I go on X platform? How do I feel after? And even during, because as much as like there is difficult stuff that we do need to think about and look at we don't need to be thinking about it all the time. We also need a break. - Yeah, as human beings, just to only hear the negative all the time is bad for us. It's bad for me, you know? And I know that as I said before, I'm, well-based in reality. I know what happens in the world. I know the bad stuff and I know the good stuff. It's fine for me. It's finding that balance. It's going, I can do this and feel happy about where I'm at with it. Don't get me wrong. There are days where I forget that this is not actually doing me any good but I'm human that at the end of the day. And then I come off and I think, Oh, why did you go there? But you know, okay, I've done it. And let's just move away from it. I just don't think... I've lost my train of thought. I just don't think all that negativity all the time is good for anybody. But I also think if you're struggling and you can't have that kind of insight that this is not doing me any good. it's an ever decreasing circle. Isn't it? You can't, you can't away from it because you feel you have to just engage in it. And then everything spirals just gets worse and worse. - Yeah. I do notice actually that when I when my mental health starts to sort of crash, that is one of the signs is that I am on Twitter more and I am I am reading every bad news article and I am like, Oh, the world is awful. Literally everything is awful in the world. Absolutely. 100% of it. There is no good at all. And the sort of trying to intervene with myself and be like just to step away, just step away, is so difficult because there is this guilt complex that kicks in of like, well, if you don't want to read it then you don't care about it. And you don't want to be someone who doesn't care. And it's like, that's not what that means. That's really not what that means. - Yeah, actually I need to give myself a break, but again you, you yourself, you can not do it sometimes, and it's as you say, it's not healthy. It's not good for you, but it's an indication that perhaps, you know, it really is time to put everything down and, you know, go do, go do the homeschooling for me - Coming to the homeschooling then. Cause you are a stay at home mum at the moment, but you are you all creating art with a view to sort of get back into the workplace in some capacity in the future. How, how are you sort of how are you creating your social media I guess with that sort of in mind? - This is a tricky one. I think I have lots of different ideas about routes. This could take, you know, that may or may not make it something that can produce income in the future, if it does brilliant. And if it doesn't actually that's okay too because I'm enjoying what I'm doing primarily. That's the key that I'm enjoying it. If I'm not enjoying it, I don't want to do it. How am I making my social media? I, at the moment, it's about the art. It's about creating the paintings. The people that I'm connected with on social media are artists. They're people that create they're people that are naturally curious about the arty way of the world. So I don't know that they will be the audience I need moving forward because if I want to sell to them they're creating their own stuff. You know? So it's not perhaps right now for the audience I have for my social media group. It's more about learning, sharing seeing what people are doing looking for different things to challenge me, to inspire me. I'm not always very good at sitting down and thinking I'm just going to paint something. Well what? You know, that, that's the first thing. What? I quite like. I like these challenges. I like people that say, you know, let's focus on this for a week or we're going to do this and try that those things are really good for me because they make me think differently. And then I can think about those things and put them down on paper. If I wanted to take this forward onto a different platform on to to perhaps selling or making things to make money, I don't know where I would go with that right now. You know, I've had different thoughts about you know, perhaps painting cards and having them printed up or bespoke cards, you know this last few months for, for friends and things instead of buying cars, I've been painting cards but painting at a very personal something that's relevant to them now, you know, I'm not sure that they're are legs in that as a long-term investment but it's a nice way to just get into sharing something that I've created, a personal touch. You know, maybe it will come in the form of look, somebody emails me or DMs me and says, look, can you paint this? I can do this. Or you've seen what I can do so far. I could paint it in, in my style in the way that I can do it to the best of my ability. You know, if it's good enough, great. Hopefully somebody will pay me to do it but if it's not, then you know there has to be some sort of, and this is, I suppose I've got to think about there's got to be some framework that supports that you know, and then I have to grow the people on my social media that will want to buy that kind of thing, you know? And I don't know how I would do that. I think that will be tricky. It will happen. She says! - You will! Think positive! - Things will work their way out, you know, and something it might not be quite clear in my head yet, but but there is something clearly kind of coming together thinking about it, you know, different thoughts. I think I need perhaps to know a bit more in my mind where I'm going to then focus on getting the right audience on Instagram. You know - I find that it just naturally evolves though. I mean, if you're sort of at the moment, if you're using it for like education and inspiration and that kind of thing you might find that it just naturally goes a certain way and that as your art develops and you take part in certain different challenges and different things and and find sort of where your niche is, if you like and the things you specifically enjoy, you might find that that you just naturally do start growing an audience who who like that, your specific style, that sort of thing. - I think that, yeah, I think these things evolve don't they in time, everything changes. And when I, when I first started, you know, my my art pages really I was doing all of my art in my journals. So they were just little sketches and it kind of quite quickly evolved into something that actually, I don't want to just do it in my journal because I really liked that piece. And so now it's all done either in a sketchbook or it's it's, you know, on on loose leaf paper, but, you know, proper paper not just printing paper, but, you know, it's, it has it has evolved so quickly from a few sketches. Or I quite like doing that too. Actually, I really am enjoying this and I want it to be better than it was, you know something I wanted to make better for myself. I find it really interesting to look back from where I started, where I am. Yeah. That's, that's, it's a really nice record because you can get, Oh my God that was just, you know, we, we all grow. We all learn for me. I love having that kind of scroll down and go, Oh my gosh. But you know, I post, I did a piece of work last week and I posted it on both of my accounts. One account, it got 60 plus likes and the other it got 211 likes and it's like, okay this is the same piece of work. One account's got 60 or 70 followers. It's, you know, it's one accounts got 200 and ish you know but it was a one with a smaller amount of followers that got the massive hit, kind of came back to my friend and went, Oh my gosh, what's happening? But Nope, I use exactly the same hashtags. And I, because you, you know if you've got more than one account you can just tag them, can't you, I posted it. I posted it onto my, you know, got it already to post onto the art one and tagged, I thought I'll put it on both. And it was really, really interesting to just to see how kind of one just shot off one way. And it was like, Oh, okay. That's that's yeah. I found that really interesting. - Wow. - Obviously a different, I don't know. I don't think - Maybe for an audience it might've been tailored slightly more towards one audience than the other. - No, it was the same, same hashtags, same thing. - Yeah. But I mean, if, if you because you'll have slightly different audiences it resonated slightly more with people on one account, I think. Yeah. - Yeah. Anyway, I found that I was like, Ooh, that's interesting. Maybe I should put other stuff there, switch over a bit. [Laughter] - [Alexis] And why not? - I got it muddled up...! [Laughter] It's happened. Yeah. - Yeah. Fortunately it hasn't ever happened to me yet. Yet! It's I'm sure it will at some point. [Laughter] - Post. - Oh no, no, no, not there!. Off! Delete, delete. - That is the wrong person! That is the wrong client. - Yeah, of course. It's very different with clients, but yeah. Yeah. In fact, I've, I've sent emails before and gone, Oh, golly, gosh. Sorry. That's...not right. That not where that was meant to be going. It happens, it happens. - We are but human. - Yes, indeed. I'm going to hold onto that thought. I'm not infallible. These things happen. Accidents happen. It's okay. Yep. Yep. - I want to, I want to ask you about sort of confidence on social media, because last year you joined in with one of my Instagram challenges and one of the challenges was about sort of going live and posting video. And I remember one of the I think it was the third day, it was about posting a video and you were very much like, Oh I don't know if I can do this. I don't know if I can be on video. Oh, I don't. And then on the sort of the go live day you went live in my Facebook group - I did! - And I was like, I'm sorry, who Who is this woman? Who is this person going live when she said she couldn't do video? - I didn't think I could but there was an element of feeling safe in the group. And I still struggle with the thought of going live. And sometimes I think that would be really cool just to hop on, show somebody. And then I bottle out every time. I quite like the whole Reel thing. I think I need to work because it just drains my battery if I do it in real time, because I'm not, you know you see them all finished and they're like, great but I've got to do all this bit in the middle and that's where your time. And I can't do it that quickly. And then the phone's dead. So I need to work harder at learning how to use the software to manipulate that, to just then upload it. And I have it. It's just something I need to work hard on doing because I quite like Reels. - Yeah. So you do seem to have sort of grown in confidence not just in like sort of videos but generally speaking on social media, you, you seem more more comfortable I guess, using it. - I think part of that is demonstrated by some of the people that are in my Facebook community, my group I see them using Facebook, not Facebook, Instagram I see them using it and I see how they use it. And perhaps they've debunked. Some of that fear that, you know it felt enormous the first time I kind of did that. I was like, Oh my goodness. You know, and actually there was a real OH! My heart's going and I've got to try and do this and it's good to push yourself. You know, it really is. But I do think that seeing other people using different methods of presenting their work, what they're doing, just what is matter, what matters to them in that moment has perhaps encouraged me to be a bit more brave to, to kind of face some of those fears and try different things. And I know actually, even in the way I put my posts now whereas before I would just post it I try now to put a little bit of an explanation or something that gives a little bit of context to what I've done rather than just here's my art for today, which, which was fine. But actually if I want to engage with people it has to be a two-way thing. I have to give something, otherwise it, it won't work. It won't ever build. And I do think that that's, that's a nice way to just start introducing a little bit more of me as in my personality into this is what I'm, you know, this this is the art, but actually this is why I've done this or this is a bit about it or where I've got the idea from. So I am trying to, to, to build to build my experience, but also to, to use to utilise these things that are available within social media, to me. Yeah - Yeah, yeah, no, I think it is. It's really nice. Sort of, and it's really nice for me to see as well because I started following you quite early on. - Yeah. - So it's been nice to sort of see you gain that confidence and grow and how your sort of your presentation of your content has changed. And it is, I think they do say that sort of courage is what are they, what are they, what is that saying? I don't know... contagious? That's the one. Courage is contagious. - But I, you know, I, you know, I the first Instagram challenge I did was yours and actually I haven't really done any others but that really, it, it pushed me to think about it in a different way, you know? And it, it pushed me to, to look at, okay, well what if you did do this? Okay, well, it might not have been perfect but it didn't fall apart. Did it. And I think sometimes again for me, I need somebody to go go on, do it just kind of, I suppose it's to hold me accountable, you've signed up for this. You said, you're going to do it and I'll do it because otherwise I'm like, Oh, it's a bit scary. Or, or I'm not really sure how to put this together. So I just won't, and that's, that's the honest truth. I don't really I kind of get what they're talking about, but I'm not sure. So, so I don't do it. And that's maybe that's laziness. Maybe I should push myself to say, learn how to do it then. But sometimes it's easier just to step back you know, and, you know, it's great talking about all this, but alongside all of the stuff about me I do have life, you know, we all do, but I do have I've got to homeschool and a dog walk, but I do those things. And in many ways I'm very fortunate because I'm not under any pressure to have to go out and earn, you know, I I have this time that I can create that. I can share things with my family. And I know that not everybody's that lucky. So I accept that, but I want to try and make the best of it. I don't just want it to, you know, bypass me. - I think that's nice. And it is, it's that's another thing I think that has come out of lockdown that actually, I was sort of talking to you about before we started recording about that sort of feeling of, I am so lucky to be in this situation. But it's still hard. - Yes. - And that sort of complex sort of emotions that go along along with that, because you don't want to sort of complain but you also are like, Oh, this is, this is difficult. - Yeah, it is. And yeah, it's also very, I think social media is all about being outside, looking in isn't it, it's it's almost voyeuristic because you're looking at what somebody else wants you to see, you know and most people put up the good stuff. They don't put up all the bad stuff. So I kind of on the flip side there's lots and lots of negativity but then the good stuff that you see is almost too good. Oh God, well, I'm not achieving that. Or I can't, how have they got so much together? And, Oh my God, you know, I've just about managed to get out of bed and feed us today. There is that, that, that fear of failure as well, that you know, I've, I've got, I'm very fortunate. I'm in a really, really good position. There are still things that have been difficult through lockdown, but then you look around and other people go, Well I've done this and this and this and this. And you think, Oh my goodness. You know, gosh. So I suppose in every facet of social media there are positives and negatives. Aren't there, you know, it's about looking for the good for me looking for the good stuff finding something that makes me feel a bit happier. That has a, a dose of reality but not a dose of negativity every time I look at it. That is key. I think. - Yeah, no, I agree. I agree. That's a, that's a wonderful point to end on; look for the positivity. - There you are! It's out there! - It is that it's true. So tell us, tell everybody where they can find you and and this positivity that you're putting out into the world. - So you can find me @sparklypainter on Instagram. - Very good. I will put links in the show notes and all the places so people can get to you very easily. - Thank you very much, very much. - [Hawke] If you want more regular reminders to find your own way to use social media, follow Alexis on your social platform of choice, all the links will be in the show notes until next time, be a human.