A year ago I very publicly made social media my job. It was easy to do – I know every platform and it’s algorithms well and spend enough time online to know the latest memes and what’s hot and what’s not. But some of you may have noticed my decline on social platforms for personal use. Here’s how I feel about social media now, having made it my job.
Social media as a job
I tend to get a vague expression whenever I answer the question, ‘what do you do for a living?’ So let’s be clear about that first. I take brands and I manage their online presence. For some, that’s every single social platform you can think of. For others, it’s the specific few that I tell them will work best with their product or service and their goals. I then make the daily content for those platforms, ensure they go out at the best times for optimum performance, and manage any communications that come through digitally. There are calls and emails and meetings too but for the most part I’m online as their brands.
I know that being online and getting paid for it sounds like fun – and it absolutely is, you’re not wrong! But if I have too many clients, I can get burned out. From 9 to 5 I’m in front of a screen – the laptop for emails, scheduling, stat reports and the like. Then the phone for Instagram and Twitter engagement and staying on top of people’s tweets and comments as they come in. It’s constant even after the working day, with multiple screens flashing and pinging with notifications constantly.
I’ve spoken about notification anxiety before but to put it in a broader sense, everything that reaches the senses takes energy. From noise pollution to too many lights, it takes something from you so not having precautions to separate work causes burnout! To be honest, after getting inundated with constant fast information, I end up having a short attention span for slow information. I don’t want to spend any more time on social media than I have to. And I feel exhausted of creative ideas anyway! I give so many ideas to my clients that sometimes there’s nothing left in my own pot! The only place that feels right for me is Twitter – the platform for odd thoughts rather than thought through content.
Getting back on board
Now that I have a bit more free time, I’m inspired again to get back on the bandwagon. I love books and work hacks and wellbeing tidbits and I miss the blogging community when I’m not around it. If you’re feeling burned out by your social media, you’re following the wrong people. Have a spring clean, cut out some accounts that bore you and follow people who inspire you, you’ll have creative ideas immediately! I feel like now I’ve found a good balance and I’ve made my platforms as positive as possible, I’m really enjoying being back on platforms like Instagram and LinkedIn.
As with all things, doing something you love as a job can make you love it less. But, as with everything, a work-life balance creates more room for whatever you want to do. I still love social media, I just love different platforms than I used to! If you see content coming through, I’m feeling inspired. If it’s quiet, I’m feeling burned out! Swings and roundabouts, always.