Diving deep into disconnecting from social media with coach, Eleanor Snare (they/them), for the final episode of Social Media for Humans season 1.
We discussed how running a business without social media has been going for Eleanor, consumerism and late capitalism, FOMO and whether we're no longer able to process loss.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on anything and everything we discussed in the comments.
Eleanor Snare is a coach for folks who want to leave a positive legacy, but don't know where to start.
Trained in a toolkit of interlocking modes including design, social history, creative education and commercial communications, Eleanor creates spaces and step-by-step programmes for people to work out how they can be of service to the planet with generosity and joy.
Eleanor has the pleasure of being a lecturer in the only specialist art school in the North of England, facilitating critically-aware, ecologically-sound fashion education for 18 to 21 year olds.
A queer non-binary individual, who yet also benefits from colonial and capitalist structures of oppression, Eleanor recognises the importance of belonging for those they interact with. Their purpose is therefore two-fold: to be of planetary service, and to re-connect people to something larger than themselves to which they can belong.
Through this work, Eleanor hopes to contribute to the healing of corrupted systems both inside and outside ourselves.
Other things mentioned.
Intersectional environmentalist Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/intersectionalenvironmentalist/
I hang out on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/alexisbushnell/
Find me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SocialMediaForHumans
Join the club to learn more about ethical and effective social media marketing: https://socialmediaforhumans.club/
Voice over by Hawke Wood: https://www.spotlight.com/3490-9081-8844
[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 theconversation. [Alexis] Hello hello, I am here with fabulous Eleanor! Do introduce yourself. [Eleanor]Oh thanks Alexis, I'm looking forward to having a chat today! So my name is Eleanor Snare, and I am a part-time lecturer at the north of England's only specialist art school, which I always think sounds really impressive, so that's great fun. I teach level five and then I also run my own, I say business, it's funny when it's just you, isn't it, and someone asked me this yesterday about business. it's like I've got all these minions, no, it's me, the minions are internal minions, working as a coach and a mentor with people who are really interested in leaving a positive legacy on the planet, so I tend to work with a lot of conscious entrepreneurs, but also creative practitioners as well, and that's really what I'm trying to bring into my teaching is that ecological consciousness, even though what I teach in fashion branding and communication is kind of the least ecologically conscious, but maybe that's why it's so important that we that we do it because it's not doing it very well at the moment, so yeah that's me, that's my introduction - Very good, and very interestingly you are not really on the social medias - No no no, well I mean I was, right, and that's how we connected in the first place, but yeah, this year so, well, no, sort of end of 2020 to in the middle of or late 2021 I took a break from using Instagram, really it was at the point in 2020 when it was sort of the American elections, and just everything was kind of, it just felt like a lot of noise, particularly on Instagram, and I realized that we're spending a lot of time on it but not really getting a lot out of it, so I sort of went on a extended hiatus which lasted I think nine months, and then I gave birth to the realization that actually I didn't really, I had got so much good stuff out of it, and I've met so many good people through that channel, but my time with it had come to an end, and similarly I think that happened when you know, I signed up for Twitter, like I think technically I've been on Twitter for like more than ten years now, but I haven't used it in a long time, and that's sort of just hovering in the background, and again on Facebook, I signed up I started using it and then I think I've got so many family members on there, it's less easy to detach myself from it, so yes I'm not really using or on, or like I would say maybe the better word is like interacting with social media in the same way that I used to, although I do use LinkedIn a bit more because I just found that people would, there were some really interesting people on there that were talking about things in a kind of slightly more robust way, and that I felt actually I was getting a really good education from being connected to these people, but yeah I don't really use it, so it's a funny sort of, I'm interested to see what your thoughts are and obviously because the theme and the focus is on using social media, and yeah, I'm sort of intrigued as to what you think I might be able to add to the conversation - I think I was really interested to talk to you generally because you're just amazing, but especially after you sort of stepped away from social media, because there are so many people I speak to who have the fear basically where they feel like they have to be on social media, and they have to be on it all the time because of their business, that they can't run a business without social media, and clearly I am a little biased, and I will say you can do it, but it's a lot easier if you use social media, but I wanted to get your take on it because obviously you have now been doing it essentially without social media for nine months, that's a fair a fair time to just test how well that's working for you, because so many people I think just need to realize that yes, it is useful to have social media, but it isn't everything, you can do it in without social media completely, you can do it with a limited social media usage, you can figure out what is the right balance for you without sacrificing your business and income, so did you have, like, the fear when you first were like I need to get out of here for a bit - Do youknow what I did and the reason I didn't is because originally when I started using social media, like back in whenever, it wasn't for anything, it wasn't for anything commercial, it was just, it was just for me, and then as time went on I sort of saw it as you say, as an opportunity to use it in a commercial setting, or maybe if I'm sort of trying to think more broadly about not just like my business, but actually me as a kind of entity, as a spokesperson for something, or as a stand for something, so as time went on I realized I could use it for that, but when I came to use it in a very strongly commercial sense, i.e getting people to buy stuff, getting people to sign up, it just didn't work, and maybe it is not the problem, maybe what I was sharing or selling was the problem, maybe it was just me, maybe it was what, you know there's so many different factors that go into the use, and the use of a marketing channel, you know, whether it's social media or billboard or cold calling, whatever so when it came to just being like I don't want to use this anymore, I didn't feel any worry because I was like, because I know that I've tried it and it doesn't, it's not working for me, and if you know, in the future, I come up with something and actually I think oh no, this is going to be the best channel to use it, then I'll do it, like I don't have a problem reconnecting with it, but I think it became such a time suck of kind of busy work, like it felt like it was doing something, and I just, so when I stopped using Instagram, for like that first bit I just found myself like constantly checking my emails, and it was just like transference habit, you know when people give up smoking and then they start fiddling with something, it's just transference habit, and it wasn't, I wasn't doing anything, I was just sort of fiddling, and I also was fiddling at something which is not my natural gift, like I'm good with people, and I enjoy engaging with individuals, and engaging with people, and really like seeking them and like, there was a phrase, somebody's like listening to their deepest truths, you know I'm really into that, but that's quite hard to do on a social media platform which is designed for speed, frequency, and I don't want to say superficiality because I think that's quite loaded, it's more that it's just a surface experience of the world, which is great, like we need sensation, we need inspiration, we need that kind of connection at that level, but we also need that deeper connection, and that's not my gift, that's not my talent, so I was kind of trying to force myself into that role that is just not what what I want to do, so if in the future I was to kind of engage with it again I probably wouldn't do it, I would get someone to help me because I can spend my time doing the things that are in my natural talents, and I do get the sensation that a lot of people have in their minds and think of oh well, I'm really good with people, or I enjoy making friends, therefore I can just use social media, like it's really easy, but it's nice, it is a unique talent just like any aspect of marketing or any aspect of running your business is a unique talent which may or may not resonate with your gifts, and I always say to my students, you know a lot of what we have to do is talk to them about weaknesses, and talk to them about improving it, but my thing is like, the thing I want them to focus on is building on their strengths, and then collaborating around their weaknesses, because you can spend a lifetime shoring up all the things that you think aren't very good about yourself, and then the really strongest muscle almost like, dies away, so it's a bit of, it wasn't so much I didn't feel any fear of like oh, I'm gonna miss out, it was more that I wanted, I didn't want to just, I didn't want to keep doing things which were not within my kind of zone of genius as a bit kind of highfalutin', but that sort of thing, but for some people, you know that is their, it is their area where they really shine and excel, but it's kind of, that was a combination of it, there were some maybe fear aspects of if I step away from this, and I have a important message to share with people, whether or not it's commercial, am I sort of doing a disservice by like going quiet, but again kind of wrestling with that was that, well how you know if we're talking about things like ecological consciousness, or integrity, or you know I don't know, anti-capitalism, getting that across in an Instagram post like isn't, again it's not my gift, there are people doing it really well, there's a fabulous Instagram account called Intersectional Environmentalist, and their work is brilliant as a team, they create this amazing kind of visually stimulating Instagram friendly content about complex environmental issues, but I guess in a way I used to be envious of that, whereas now I think what someone else is doing, I can just do something else, and you know, I can focus in my my area, and I can think okay, well what actually is the talent that I want to bring, so that's kind of from a personal, very conceptual point of view, and similar to that I didn't fear stepping away, because stepping away was also stepping away from like the busyness and the speed, that I'm just not interested in, and I think it is for me it it just, and again I'm sure you work with people and you advise you don't have to do it in a manic way, but it feels very fast and intense, and that to me, that paradigm is one of the problems of what's wrong with kind of business and industry, and the problems that it's wreaking on the planet, so I don't want anyone to contribute to that, so it's about kind of slowing it down for myself, and then also I think sort of recognizing that I have an audience of people, like my email list, or even just people like, I know, you know people at work, and as I said I do still use LinkedIn, it's a slightly different audience which I think if I'm honest just genuinely looking at demographics it's more mature on LinkedIn than Instagram, and they're more perhaps ready to engage with some of the things that I am offering and then, so it was knowing that I already had a new audience, and that my aim with my work is not to be the biggest, it's not even to be the best, it's just to be like, enjoy it and that, and I sometimes wonder if that's part of it, people get into that kind of mindset of they start doing things tactically because they don't know their strategy, and the reason they don't know their strategy is they don't know what the vision is, so there's a bit of that, and also, you know, just from, again from a personal level, as many people, the experience through the pandemic shifted my priorities radically, and the idea of almost like worrying about my business just had to fall away because I had, I'm in a different position in that I have a part-time role, as well as a lecturer, but that was so all-consuming that it was kind of like, do you know what actually, if my vision for my work is to support people and be of service, to aid them in their facilitation, and aid and facilitate them in their personal development with this view to being more ecologically conscious, like I'm literally doing that three days a week, and like someone's already paying me for it, and these are young people, and it's having an effect on them, so anything else is like a bonus so that there's a bit of that, but I can see why, for people who are working on their business full-time, or who kind of have yet to maybe establish what the real big picture is for their business, or someone who's maybe like, really at the start of their journey it can feel like a fear to say well, I'm gonna almost like reject this way of working that we think everybody's doing, you know, the vast majority of people, if they're using social media they're not saying anything, and I just think about, you know, there's however many billion of us on the planet, it's like most people are not constantly using social media, but it's that feeling, it's like kind of, it's like everyone has an iPhone, like iPhone isn't the highest, you know, iPhone isn't the highest selling like software hardware ever, but because their marketing's so good, you know, so yeah there was some kind of strong enough reasons to leave that overcame any concern that I was detaching from something really important, there was more important things - I think it's really interesting you mentioned like the big picture, because I think, I do think that is often why people get sucked into social media, because somewhat ironically a lot of the messaging on social medi,a from social media experts, is very much like you have to be here all the time, you have to do this thing, and that thing, and the other thing, and all of these things will change, so you have to follow me to know what to do next, and you can't trust yourself, and there is no underlying principle that you need to follow, it's all just all changing or shifting all the time, and people get hung up on that because there is this big messaging around social media is the most important way to market your business now, and actually if you have an idea of where you are going with your business, you're like overarching goals for it, you can work back from that and go right, well, what do I need to use social media for, how does my social media need to work to make that thing happen, and then you can start to ignore all the bullshit basically, because there are underlying principles to each network, I mean ultimately all of the networks just want you to spend more time on the networks, and get more people to spend more time on the network, that if you understand that you can understand a huge amount about social media just from that one place, but I think if you check out of social media for a little bit, and think about your actual goals for your business, or even for your life, generally speaking, and then figure out where social media fits into that, and for some people it might not fit in at all, it might just be like no, this is not at all what I want to be a part of my life, but I think for a lot of people that it will be in there, because there is a definite benefit to being able to reach people for basically free, to be able to actually connect with other people who are doing similar things, to find inspiration, to get support, to keep in touch with people they care about, but you may find that you actually don't want to use it all that much, and that's fine, but if you don't have that idea to start off with, and you just sort of go with the flow you can so easily get caught up in that just, snowball of social media, where it's like always on, always on, give me more content, and that is not great for your business, or your mental health, or your social life, generally speaking, so I do think it is having that big picture really really helps, but I do think you generally need to actually turn off, to be able to check in with that and step away from the always on, always going, to have that sort of still time to go right, what do I need, how is this going to work for me, - That as a process is hard, so actually stepping away is hard, but also thinking and going deep with your own kind of ambitions, and some people get very frightened of their own goals, they're very frightened of, perhaps the scale, or perhaps the kind of intensity, the emotional intensity of what they want to achieve, as you said either in their work or in their life, and you know I think part of one of the contributing factors to me stepping away from it is I teach it, so I teach how the networks work to some extent, is this quite light touch I would say, so it's not, I'm not going into detail about every single platform because that would be a degree, do you know what whereas we've got a week or two weeks, but the key thing that I reiterate is that, exactly your point about the time spent, and talking about the idea of habit forming with the Stanford guy, Nir Eyal, who wrote this, I don't know if you've come across him, you might have done - I want to say yes, but I'm not entirely surewhy - Yeah so he wrote a book, he came up with a model called the hook model, which is fundamentally a process by which one can generate habits in other people to come back and reuse your service or your product, and I teach this to my students, but I also teach that Nir Eyal came up with a book about that, he went to talk to, you know, huge tech companies, and like companies all over the world like Fortune 500 and everything, and taught them this, and this was maybe, I don't know quite a few years ago, 2018 or something, maybe even earlier, and then his latest book is all about how these big companies are stealing your attention, and how to push away from it and how to detach, and I just think when I realized this I was like, this is really messed up, this is so messed up, and it is a habit and like any habit, it's not even, for some people it is addictive, but compulsion is probably a better word to use for any compulsive behavior, it's really difficult to release yourself from it, and it does generate a huge amount of dopamine, and a huge amount of social acceptance, and all sorts of things, everyone's different in what they get from it, from interacting with these kind of social networks which are, you know, sped up friendship groups, like bigger and faster friendship groups, and you feel so good to hang out with your friends, and they laugh at your jokes, and they think you're really funny, but like if you were to spend all of your time with your friends constantly trying to make them laugh, constantly waiting for them to laugh, but half of them aren't listening, like you'd be exhausted, and that's what it felt like for me, just this sort of, as someone who is very introverted, but you know I do love being the center of attention and performing, but in a different way, but you know the social aspect, that kind of deep connection, I do need a lot of time by myself, but that's why I found social media so absolutely just disappointing and draining eventually, in the end, and partly I think that some of the fun had just gone out of it you know, and and I really value the people who can continue to have it, something fun and something just silly, and I went back to my Instagram, I was taking loads of screenshots of like old, you know, content, in case it got deleted, and I started my Instagram account, but just I was just doing this thing called a pattern a day, and I just took a photo of a pattern that I thought was cool and that was it, and I was like I loved it, but then and I never cared about any one looking at it or liking it, or following me, it just doesn't bother me, and then it kind of got to the point where it just felt like such a heavy responsibility that I'd only just created for myself, so yeah that that stepping away and going, what I'm actually, what actually is the point of this, and that's why you know, talking about LinkedIn, it's great because I feel I'm connected to so many more international comrades and colleagues, I'm connected to people talking about things which genuinely blow my mind, but they're talking about them in a way that is very professional, and it's not sound bitey, it is like you need to go away and think about this, and made some really really good networks on there, some of which have then translated into you know, Zoom calls and kind of WhatsApp friends and stuff like that, but there's something about there that I think perhaps is my, I mean I'm not that old, I'm gonna say my age, where I just go actually I kind of, I have my friends and I have the people who like, I want to see their outfits and their holidays and their dogs, but what I don't have is necessarily a really rich professional community that kind of challenges me and expands me, not just, you know I have those elements at work, but in terms of broader knowledge and people who are maybe more specialist and interested in the same things as I am, and I think it's a huge gift what I find on there, and perhaps that's part of it is you outgrow things, or they change, and you just grow apart, and human beings generally aren't very good at saying goodbye, and there's, I think sometimes it's that for people is, I don't want it, I find this but it's not just FOMO, it's like actually fear of loss, I don't want to, I don't want to let this go, I don't want to let this go, I don't want to let all these people go, but there's a time when I totally I completely agree with you, you've got to take that moment to be still and say right, what is this, what is this doing for me and my life and my work, how is it enhancing, and if it isn't enhancing then you know that I really think that any phrase like I have to, or I need to, it's just like if you say that it's probably something that you can just fuck off immediately because it's like if that's how you feel about it then just, you know, it's probably a sign, a red flag, it's actually, there's a better way of doing it - I think as well it's interesting that you mentioned LinkedIn and that you find that on LinkedIn, because LinkedIn has a reputation for being very corporate, very capitalist, very male centric, but actually there is definitely, or there are definitely, communities on LinkedIn now who are very aware of social issues and talking about sustainability, and ethics, and diversity, and inclusion, and sharing those things, and it is interesting that it still has this really corporate feel to it for a lot of people, so how did you sort of find that corner of LinkedIn, if you like, or did it just sort of happen naturally - Yeah that's really interesting, of view on it, and you know there are some like, what do they call, like LinkedIn bros, I think something for me to reflect on there is I worked at some places that were run like that, they were quite unpleasant, you know, quite unpleasant environments to work in, obviously I was connected to those people on LinkedIn, but because it's a professional network I had no qualms about just disconnecting or unfollowing them, whereas I think because the way Instagram for example, or Facebook is sort of modeled, or perhaps even how people started using it there feels like so much more kind of friendship tension, I can't unfollow them because they're following me, and because they know my neighbors, blah blah blah, like that whereas I'm like oh that guy that I met once met a networking event, turns out he's a massive dick, and you know you've no, there's no kind of, it's kind of because it is professional, there is an element where it can just be like, you know what, I'm not interested in your nonsense, so there's an aspect of that so at first I was like, when I was on there, I was like all of these people are terrible, but then I sort of went well it's because I've just worked in some places that have had lots of terrible people in them, whereas actually they're just like the world, there are of course terrible people, there's amazing people as well, so I think a big pivotal point for me on LinkedIn was I joined a group called Humans First, which I think you might be connected to it as well, and I sort of went on a few Zoom calls with them when they when they were doing it, and it was great it was an hour of people from all over the world, they had one in the UK, America and Asia, and I think they've just changed it now, so there's maybe just one in the UK, but people all over, there's a topic, you talk about it, and then you go into breakup rooms and you meet people, but the entire point is that I think one of the things they say is we really just don't care what job you do, you're a human first, like you just bring yourself, and you bring your vulnerabilities, and through that I was then connected to a very interesting and I would say relatively diverse group of people who I then found those unique, more close connections with, who then kind of helped me find those other communities, but also actively seeking that again, knowing what my vision is what my goal is, I'm interested in ecological consciousness, I'm interested in art education for that purpose, so literally finding people, and being like you do, that I want to follow you, and that I think people somehow think that you just don't do that on LinkedIn, you just, on LinkedIn it's like it just has to be people you already know, or people that you worked with or people, potential clients, it's like no, you know, I see it as, again maybe it's because I have a bit of a focus or have a focus for the platform, which is to learn, and I have a focus for myself, which is this area of expertise those people just appear, of course there's going to be terrible things, and sometimes I see people sharing stuff and I'm like oh my god, but again, because I don't have any qualms about removing them or deleting them or not connecting with them I just do that, and it's so, it's more, I think I feel less socially, I feel less social pressure to maintain a status quo, either in the community that I keep on there, or what I'm saying, and so therefore I feel I can be almost like more open, because you know a lot of people on there, they don't, they haven't known me very long, so it's kind of fresh for them, and you will have seen on LinkedIn I'm not posting a lot, I was doing some videos, but since university started it's like I really I need to get into that rhythm before I then go back to making videos, but you know I loved making the videos for it, and there's something about it, there's something about it as a professional community that really chimes with perhaps my, I'm quite private person in a lot of ways, I don't know if other people would say that, but I think I am, and there's something about it which really chimes with that, and that I can be my professional self, and my front facing, you know my outward facing self, without feeling the need or being encouraged to or seeing the benefit in doing that really, like here's my deepest darkest secrets, and actually it can be useful in here, I've talked to people about that, and there's sometimes ad bits of that, but ultimately people aren't there I think people don't connect with me and follow me because they want to know about all of the, like, trauma they want to know how I'm kind of moving forward, and how we can move forward, and how things can change, and how it can kind of you know, encourage them, and it never felt like that with Facebook or Instagram, because they just they for me, they feel like these kind of tell us about yourself, tell us about your life, like show us everything, and I'm like no, I'm like, you know, holding my nightgown up going no, don't look at me, and just because I like, I want to keep stuff for myself, I want to keep them private, so I think that chimes with me, that ability to be more professional and perhaps even be a bit more sort of oh, I wanted, I don't want to say cold or Machiavellian or cutthroat, but those are the words that are coming into my head, more have better boundaries, have better boundaries, that's what it is, you know, to have, I feel much more able to do that, and I feel much more able to kind of practice that, and there are some amazing communities on there, and some of them are very active, some of them aren't, some, but there's some people doing things which are, you know, politically and academically, creatively, industrially, really radical, but they're speaking to the people who really need to hear it, that's what I think again is important is am I going to go to Instagram, where everybody's probably feels they're quite woke, and talk about like the environment, and being of service, or am I going to highlight it to people who have spent their entire lives thinking that they're the bee's knees and the earth is there for their plundering, like who is it, who is it more impactful for me to speak to, and so there's a bit of a like, you know, what you, what one, what position one wishes to take, do you wish to be the challenger, the rebel, the speaking truth to power, or do you wish to be the connector, the team player, the person bringing people like-minded folk together under a common cause, you know they're just different roles, and I think there's different strengths of people, and then there's different kind of channels where that's going to excel, and yeah, so I think there was the human service community really helped me get my foot in the door with with other people, but then also being quite open about like, I want to learn from you, you seem really interesting, you're talking about really interesting stuff, like when I say on it, and LinkedIn, if I send an invite like, I'm really looking forward to seeing what you write is because I am, and seeing it for me is maybe a bit of a learning opportunity, rather than this is funny isn't it, it's like when you're, I'm just, this is coming to my head right now, but it's like when you're using these social media platforms for a commercial aspect, it's like it shouldn't be, but it's yeah yeah yeah it's like, here's what I've got, here's what I'm doing, and if you're not doing that you're sort of talking really exclusively about your customer, and it's all about them, but there's a bit in between where it's like, I've got to get something out of this, I've got to get something out of this time, and this energy, that isn't just maybe financial, that is actually enriching for my life, and so I feel that that's what's really come to me from interacting with LinkedIn is I find it enriching, I genuinely find it very interesting and intriguing, and people talking about things I've never heard about, and having opinions about things and having conversations and, you know, I've connected with someone recently because a mutual connection was like you two need to talk, and it turned out she was really into like D and D, and she's like we've got a game if you want to join it, so then I'm trying to arrange to have like a chat with the guy, it's like that's actually enriching for my life, not just for a kind of little aspect of me, a little commercial aspect, or a little, I don't know self-esteem aspect or something, I think it's almost sort of encouraging me to be better at things, and get more, and be more engaged with it, but again it's how you use it, isn't it, and doing less, and listening more is generally my, I would think is just a good rule for life, and that's what I'm trying to do on there is, like, I love putting stuff out there, but actually I'm doing it once a week, and I'm just fine, like I'm getting people chat commenting and like, saying to me, but also I'm getting people at my lecturing jumping, like I saw that video, it's really good I'm like what, like how did you see it, but it did, so yeah this is sort of, it's just I think something that I found very comfortable, but again for other people there's going to be different ways of doing things at different platforms that, you know, I think about like something like TikTok, it genuinely sounds like my worst nightmare because it's like really fast, yeah, being really trendy and cool, and like knowing what all those like modern stuff is which, I'm not saying that I'm a luddite, but what I enjoy is kind of, you know, more slow classics of things, like being able to create content, seems like quite technically savvy, or at least willing to learn how to do these things that are quite fun, and all of it only takes 30 seconds, and then you're on to the next thing, like genuinely I'm like that is giving me a headache, just thinking about it, whereas for some people they're going to be like that is amazing, I love experimenting with new techniques, I love something that's fast-paced, I love the idea of being funny or, you know making up new ideas, or like interacting with culture in a kind of meme way, they love that, so amazing, go for it, but like this idea of, you know it's like with any business, it's like the M and S is they want to be everything for everyone, and so they're not really doing anything for anybody, and I think it's a bit like that is that kind of, you've got to find what works for you, and understand what the point of it is, as we said, and with LinkedIn you do have to work a bit harder to find the right people, but then when's that ever been a bad thing, you know, putting the effort in - Now it's interesting you say about like you've gotta find what works for you, because you absolutely have, and there are so many people who like message me and they're like oh, I have to do reels on Instagram, I have to get on TikTok, I have to go to Clubhouse, I have to do this thing, and I'm like why what why why do you really - Exactly and there is being on social media, and seeing quote everybody else doing those things, but a lot of it is like you say with yourself, it's interna,l it's an internal pressure of i have to do this thing because whatever, but actually you don't, I mean like I am not really on TikTok, I have a TikTok, I don't really watchTikTok's, I tend, the things I've posted to TikTok are literally just ones, I have the occasional reel that I've done that I have posted over to TikTok, and some dog video footage, and like with reels I think a lot of people expected me to go hard on reels because it's the big thing on Instagram, and I have done like maybe 10 since they came out, and my growth and engagement has not gone down, like it continues to go up, it's fine, the world has not ended because I'm not on reels, I'm also not really doing stories and again, the world has not ended, and I think there is this feeling that, especially I find it with Instagram, and I don't know whether it's because so much of the advice that is out there is about Instagram, or just because I tend to be around people who are using Instagram, but there is this massive fear about the algorithm, and whenever they launch a new feature it's like oh, I have to use this feature, I have to learn how to do this thing as well now, and I'm like no, but you don't, if what's working for you is working then keep doing that, you know, and a lot of it is also building an audience who want what you enjoy creating, like if you hate creating reals or video in general, and you force yourself to create those things, you are going to build an audience who want more of that, if you don't put that stuff out there you will build an audience of people who just enjoy your static one photo once a week or whatever, and that's fine because it it helps you to connect with your people, and I do think a lot of it comes from this I'm on social media, I have to connect with everybody, I have to appeal to everybody, and like you say that's not getting you anywhere, like school, it's so like school isn't it, it's like when you're at school you think you need to be friends with everybody, and then when you're an adult you're like, I'm happy to just be friends with maybe like two people and there's a real, there's a real kind of, there's some moment in your life where you go n,o this isn't important, but I wonder if some people don't get that until later, or they don't, they don't see it as part of this, you know, this kind of conversation, I also think, you know, talking there about if you do something you hate, and then you build an audience around it, people keep coming back for it oh, yeah, totally get that, and so I think it's like they say, you know if you make a meal and you're angry, you can taste it in the final food, and it's a bit like that, you know, if you're not genuinely enjoying what you're doing people just, you know, they don't like it, and I'd say you know, for example with the videos that I've made for LinkedIn, I love being on video, I love it, I love it, but also I love having more kind of steady control over it, so I've got a DSLR for it instead of my phone, I don't like being on my phone basically, the fundamental thing I don't like being on my phone so if I had to do loads of like things that were phone based I just, you could tell I didn't like it but this idea of like I've made a video, I've edited it, put this on, you know, and I've put it up there, people really really really liked them, they really engaged with them, but that's because I really enjoyed it, and there's sort of a weird, maybe that comes down to a sort of paradigm that we think that work has to be really hard, and we have to hate it and that if you're really working hard, and if you're really, you know, stressing and you're working all the hours god sends, everything, but somehow that's success, and rather than I went to, I've been on these fabulous retreats as I mentioned to you recently, and one of them was about work, and it was we were talking, the sort of conversation was about what is work for, and they said imagine if work was either for the love of it or the play of it, and that's it, that's all you've got, those are the two choices, and I was like oh wow, yeah, that's really exciting, because suddenly you go in, even if it is to also be commercially viable, or to generate a salary, whatever you go in looking for that, and going right, well how can I make this more loving, how can I make it more playful, how can I actually just can enjoy myself rather than assuming that work should be, or even talking about my work, promoting my work, should be so utterly arduous, but that is a fundamental paradigm of how we perceive, you know, work and life, and I mean that's very, it's easy isn't it, like if everyone thinks that work should be hard, and you're being employed, you can just treat people worse because they think that's the way it should be, whereas if we went and think well actually, I need to be happy in my job, I think employers would have to be a lot better, you know they'd have different rules, right, and similarly when we're our own boss you know, everyone I've known this, like who works in themselves, they tend to say no, I am the worst boss I've ever had, and it's because we just like slave driver, but if we went in thinking oh, I'm doing this because I love it, or I'm doing this because it's just me, just I have so much fun doing it, your rules then change about what you're willing to do or not do, and I think well I know that it just, you just drop stuff you're like do you know what I don't like, making videos on my phone, so I'm just not gonna do it, but that's a real, you know there's almost a confidence in and kind of self care I would even say, of saying I'm gonna just do things that I enjoy and I'm good at, that's a real like, that is a real stand for the self, and that's hard for people, but yeah there's no, also with you know, it's they love bringing out new stuff, because of course they do, because it's like novel, and people get excited about it, but that whole thing about always the algorithm is against me, you know sometimes I think is it just that you're not very good at it, I'm like that's okay, I wasn't very good at that, you know what, sometimes I enjoy it, sometimes, but I wasn't very good, so like you can't, I say to my students you can't be good at everything, you're probably going to be fine at some things, and maybe great at one thing, and so like stop, you know, this is you know, can give yourself permission to suck, and therefore to stop doing it and go and do something else that you both enjoy and can excel at, and for some people that might, that might be you know, literally cold calling, or it might be doing events, or it might be going and knocking on doors, or giving out flyers, or putting in you know cards in the co-op or whatever, it doesn't have to be this sort of this one size fits all, because we're not one size are we, and tools, you know we design tools to do certain jobs, like we design a hammer to put a nail in, but if you didn't design the tool, you don't know what it's for really so like you didn't design Instagram, you're using it, you're going this hammer's really good, I'm going to use it to like ice a cake or whatever, it's like it works, you can do it, ultimately that's not what it was for in the first place, so I think there's a bit of remembering that is like, you're not, you're always going to be using it slightly ineffectively because it's not designed for what you think it's designed for, I perceive that anyway, and yeah, it's I i agree with you that a lot of advice is about Instagram, and I think it's because it's, you know, like a lot of the advice used to be about Facebook, it's kind of hitting that peak now, but I think it would be, the next thing will probably be TikTok or something like that, depending on what the consolidation of these platforms is, and the fact that they end up all looking quite similar - Yes, yeah, definitely definitely it is yeah, every everybody added stories, and now everybody's adding reels, it's fabulous - You just think oh, I think but that, and that's maybe comes from experience as well, like if you've just joined it, or if you just start using it a certain way everything seems new, whereas like if you sit back and look at the history of it, or look at the commonalities, or even just like you said, you know we've said so often during this conversation that taking a moment to be still, and seeing that bigger picture, you're just like wait a minute this looks very familiar, and admit that gives you a bit of freedom, doesn't it to to kind of make better choices - Yeah yeah I want to circle back to something you said before, about the fear of a loss on social media, because I've had a few conversations with friends recently actually about how social media has changed our experience of permanence, and how like we now are, and this was sparked by a lot of the things that, especially Facebook are rolling out the legacy accounts, and what to do with your social media after you die, and when do you close an account, and all this kind of thing, and it fascinates me and it will really interest me to see any sort of psychological studies on this in the future, because I think that social media generally has completely changed how okay we are with letting things go, because now if we lose a loved one there is a whole account of their posts and videos and photos, and we don't really have to let them go and process that, and that I think is going to start to become a massive issue, not just with the sort of loss of people we care about, but just generally, because I think we are becoming very attached to things lasting forever in a way that that's always been a very human thing, wanting to leave something behind, but I do think social media has given us a much easier way to do that, and made it much harder for us to think about just letting go, so I'm really interested to know like what you think about that - That's a fascinating topic isn't it, and there's there's sort of different types of letting go as you said, you know there's the there's loss of a loved one, and the echo, the like digital echo that it leaves, and you know I knew someone who had passed away in their family, and they would get sort of the little Facebook reminders of oh, you know, a year ago today, and do we think, do we feel that that's beneficial to processing grief, or do we feel that it hinders the processing of grief, so there's that loss, there's a loss of you know, potential future things, so if you decide to like quit Facebook, what if I can't, what if no one wants to give me their phone anymore, and I can't meet anyone, if you decide to you know, to not use say for example dating apps, am I ever going to meet someone, and that as you said, human beings, we've always wanted to leave something behind, we're so conscious of our own mortality, it's kind of a blessing and a curse, and it's interesting, yeah, you say that are we living in this time accelerated by social media, of not being able to let go, and I wonder if part of that is because we are so present to the reality of, for example extinction of species, climate catastrophe, human-made climate change, kind of actually a bit conscious that the end might be a bit nigh, you know, I mean like it might be nigh'er than we thought it was, I wonder if that's something, is that kind of as we recognize that the sort of pressing, or the presence of that larger scale catastrophe, or larger scale loss, are we then clinging on to things and, you know as it, are we then suddenly say well, I don't want to lose this which I can control, or I don't want to lose this person, or I don't want to lose that, there's also an element where I wonder if it's we've become very used to digital things lasting forever, whereas previously you know, if we had a photo it'd get lost, or get waterlogged, or get burnt, or like you just accidentally throw it away, and so the permanence of things, we have to deal with the fact that they're impermanent at some point, whereas digital content feels permanent, and in many cases it can be, you know within the context of how we perceive permanence at the moment, as in like will it last for infinity, I don't know but it's like, there is those things are always there, and so maybe we've become a bit numb to the idea of yeah, losing things, because we don't have things, you know we don't have cds that we lose, or they get scratched, and we can never listen to that album again, we don't have mixtapes that get melted in the car, or like all the you know, they all get stretched out, we don't have love letters that we lose, or we burn, because we want it to be ended ,we just have all this stuff that's just present, and I think yeah, it's intriguing that sense of potential loss and whether we see it as, whether it's seen as conducive as I said to healing for me, you know there's a really amazing poem, I believe it's Ted Hughes, and talks about reading love letters again, and he describes it as a spade on old bones, and that to me is a really evocative image of, it was just everything was peaceful and quiet and you just dug into it, but for him it, as I said I believe it's by him, that's kind of an important excavation moment to like, relearn something or review something, and I think if we can have that with the apparent permanence of digital content, that could be really meaningful for people to say I'm not just looking back at photos of better times, I'm wishing about them, or I'm not just keeping holding all this stuff, but actually I'm reviewing it and going do you know what like, here's how far I've come, or I've learned this, or it's not nostalgic, it's more focused on what could be next, and where what we could learn from it i mean it's interesting you say as well, because like so I've tried to delete my Instagram account, and it is like a Sisyphean task, and like Dante's Inferno slash. it's just how do I do it. I'm like in this car. in this cycle of like do you have your password, no, okay, well here's a reminder, here's the thing to reset your password, okay i'll do that, okay here's a code to do, I'm like oh my god, because obviously I can't remember my password because you know I've got 1001 things passwords, I'm like now I'm like, do I even delete it, or do I just let it decay there and not do anything, yeah, and it's that sort of thing of like, it's not only a case of we don't want to let go, but it's hard to let go, as in it is difficult to actually delete stuff, it's difficult to not leave a mark, and that again, that my, in a kind of private introverted self, and also my slight conspiracy theory self, which is very small, it's like oh the government or something, but it's more about the idea of like, it's hard, it's harder and harder to be private, it's harder and harder to not be seen, to not be present, and that's kind of around that lost thing is we want people to be there, all the time, to always be, it's just I mean I personally think it's absolutely insufferable, I just can't the idea of it, sort of really gives me the heeby jeebies, but yeah there is a lot of sort of interesting, worrying, potentially exciting discussion around that loss, and how do we are we becoming more fixated with the permanent because now we think these things are permanent, whereas you know if we just, if we had like one global energy shortage none of this would, none of this would, matter, you know it would all just be like, but it's that sort of yeah, perhaps we, as I said, because of the fear of the scale of these other things, this sort of like subconscious fear that we're repressing, I really think that is, for a lot of people, is a repression of the reality, and where we are at the moment, in human fucked uppedness, progress my ass, where we are with that repression of such subconscious fear that global catastrophe or whatever, or global catastrophes that are already happening, perhaps the scale of that is then encouraging us to kind of claw at what we can keep, what we can retain, you know about what sort of, I want to have all these pictures, I want to have all that, you know it's like the classic thing of people saying oh, you can take photos on your phone but you can't do anything with them, I have a client who uses a service where it kind of selects Instagram images that selects Instagram images that you've taken, and then it prints them in a book, and I like, I love that because she's actually doing something with this these things that she's putting out there, and she's making these memories for herself, she's a tactile person, she's a visual artist, but there's so many of us that don't do anything like that, that we just, it's like we just put stuff in, imagine if we just went around collecting loads of stuff, or taking loads of actual photos, and printing them off, and then we just put them in a box, and then we just didn't look at them or do anything with them, it's bizarre but is that it's almost like a hoarding mentality, isn't it I think, and I think some of it as well from sort of that aspect is also very much like late capitalism, very much consumerism, very much just we have to keep consuming, keep creating, keep getting more stuff and there's what do you do with it, you can't, there's only so many photos you can have up, there's only so many cars you can drive, there's only so, there's only so much you can use and look at and enjoy, but we are incentivized to keep getting more, even though we aren't going to look at them, we're not going to use, that it's going to sit in a cupboard, or on a digital something, and we're never going to, it's almost like more for the sake of more, you know, it's like eating when you're not hungry, or having a second plate because no one wants to finish it off, but that's such an ingrained habit my partner always says something that really makes me laugh and goes well, you can't have everything because where would you put it, and it just it really makes me laugh, but it's such a great phrase to remember, it's like this all this stuff has got to go somewhere, whether it is physical, or whether it is mental, and taking up your occupying your brain space it's got to go somewhere, and I was just talking about this with someone literally the other day about, we think we need more to be happier, but when you realize that you need less, and you start, I mean I'm looking in the background and obviously I've just got loads of stuff, books, they're mainly books, they don't, books don't count, when you realize that it's actually less, it's fewer things, it's fewer of anything, really that's when you, that kind of happiness for me can actually blossom, because you can't, you just have more space in your brain and in your life, and in your day, and in your everything, but yeah you're absolutely right it is late capitalism, it is consumption for the sake of it, and consumption in ways which are probably quite unique to this moment or are quite unexpected, and maybe people don't realize that's what they're doing, and just collecting collecting collecting collecting that bit, you've seen Labyrinth right no not Labyrinth yeah Labyrinth, the bit where she's in the the junk pile - And she's like oh, it's my old room, and then creepy sort of junk monster keeps starts putting things on her, and she starts kind of, she's getting heavier and heavier, and all this stuff's building up, and she suddenly goes oh no, I can't do this, and she sort of throws everything off, I see it as that it's like we want to stay in this little safety zone, this childhood safety zone, and this kind of all of the things that comfort us around us, and all of the things that we love, and so we just pile it on, pile it on, pile it on, not realizing that it's like breaking our back, and that's, you know even though it's happening immaterially in the online space, it is still there, it's still present, you know well now I've got 200 followers, now I've got 300 followers, 400, 5000. it's just little things that are putting on your back that can break you - Yeah yeah - Quick, how do I turn this around to a positive in good news it doesn't have to be like that, it's just you know, - No carry on _ I was gonna say for people listening stop doing it, for people who listen and they think oh, it's not like that at all, great carry on, but like I think it's just presenting that viewpoint of, it's not just kind of you know, sunshine and buttons, it is sort of, there are mechanisms and there are, it's not even like Facebook is out to get us, like you know that sort of like conspiracy thing, fundamentally that way in the global north that we operate under a capitalist paradigm is affecting your mind, and affecting your behavior in ways that you, like the fish can't see the water, you cannot see it, so even just presenting that viewpoint to say you know, have you thought about this, that could be really helpful for someone to then say actually, yeah I'm gonna stop with this thing, or this aspect of the thing, but for the people they might be like yeah, I'm cool with it, I love it so great, yeah, go to your life - Yeah yeah, and I do think that's the important thing to remember is that we do have the power, like we get to choose, so if it does work for you, and you do like having lots of stuff, and taking lots of photos, and that's is benefiting you when you enjoy that, fabulous, but if you are thinking like oh yeah, actually I have 50 000 photos that I have not seen since I took them,and that actually is weighing on me, it might feel like a mammoth task to go through and delete some of them, but you do have the power to choose, like you can set aside five minutes a day just to whiz through some and get rid or whatever, and that I think for me realizing that actually I had the ability to choose how I spent my day, what I did with social media, what I did with my stuff, what was important to me was a really hugely changing and empowering moment, because a lot of what happens around us is very much like you have to do this, you have to do that, you you don't get to choose, and so yeah I think it is really really helpful to realize actually, you can choose a lot more than you might think, you can all there are, all choices, all the time, it's not like Sliding Doors, but I mean it's still, you're not like oh no, an alternative universe, but it's still yeah, you choose a lot of your experience, not everything but sometimes even subconsciously you choose things, and I yeah I do think that's a really important point, it's empowering, it's frightening, recognizing that you can choose is absolutely terrifying, and then, and then it's empowering, but the first bit is like no, I don't want to, so yeah, I'm reiterating that for people, I think is really key - Yeah, well this has been absolutely fascinating as I knew it would be really enjoyed the discussion - Good, if people where are the best places for them to find you - Yeah that's funny isn't it, I'm like, well part of me is like okay, well, if you look up into the sky on a full moon and send a raven, i'll come you can find me on LinkedIn, alternatively I'm on LinkedIn, so my full name Eleanor Snare, and that's me, so I'd love people to connect with me on there, kind of let me know what they're doing, you know, and share with me their kind of interests, and I'm happy you know my email address is hello at eleanor snare dot com, so my website is eleanor snare dot com, I mean I haven't updated my website in ages of course, because who does, another rod for one's back isn't it, but yeah LinkedIn if it's something that you think you'd like to sort of connect on that level and and find out a bit more about me, and what I do if you visit my website it's got more information, and kind of a back catalogue of writing and sort of bits and pieces like that, and then if you're just like no, I just want to have a chat, and and I don't know maybe someone else who's got podcast and wants me to be on it, or they want me to be on a video, oh my god, I'd love that, yeah, absolutely, email me hello at eleanor dot com and I'm just happy to connect with people who think there's something meaningful in the conversation, and in what I'm saying, and yeah that's that's the most important thing to me, and I think that's something that if you can find that on social media, it's brilliant, is meaning, and meaningful people, and meaningful kind of experiences, so yeah if you feel drawn to do that, I would love to connect with people - You're so welcome, thank you for inviting me, it's been an absolute honor and a pleasure to let you know that is the last podcast episode of the season, so that's season one has finished, Tilly is here, she has actually been on my lap throughout the entire interview, so if you're watching on video and saw my hands randomly moving, that's why, yeah, that was the last episode of the season, we will be back in the new year with some new guests, and it'll be very exciting, so this is a fabulous opportunity for you to watch or listen back to some of the previous episodes you might have missed, they are gradually going up on the website, so you will be able to read sort of the blog post version, and also watch the video or listen to the audio all in one place, thank you if you have been listening, especially if you've listened to all of them, if you haven't already left a review on your podcast platform, that would have to be itunes at the moment, please do leave a review, that makes a huge difference, and share it on social media or just mention it to your friends so yeah, thank you so much to everybody who has been listening to season one, and I really look forward to seeing you in the new year for season two [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