There has been a lot of talk in the press over recent years about the effects of social media on mental health. Instagram stars have had breakdowns due to the pressure, Twitter users have deleted their accounts because they were being attacked and Facebook... well, who knows what Facebook is doing!

In truth, it comes down to people posting their perfect lives across social media. It's always glossy and the bits they want you to see and we can't help but compare ourselves to it All. The. Time.

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Well, the same goes for businesses. You only see the good side of things - the good days, the great feedback and the beautiful places that people are visiting. And you find yourself comparing your own business to them, just like you do in real life.

As Rural Roots Media is a service and most of the time it's not very photogenic (as I type I'm sitting at my dining room table in my jeans and a t-shirt and I haven't brushed my hair yet. It's 3.30pm), I was putting myself under quite a lot of pressure to produce content that was Instagram worthy. And it was stressing me out!

So I put what I preach into practice for once. I always advise clients to look at their social media accounts carefully, assess what works for them and to concentrate on the platforms that do. As far as I am aware, I had never had an enquiry about my services from my posts on Instagram, despite posting testimonials and successes on there. And I've never been one to post an inspirational quote. In fact, I found that the most engagement I got was from my travel photos, so I chose to concentrate on that.

Overnight I stopped trying to promote my business on Instagram and felt instantly better. I changed my name to better reflect my personality and now it doesn't matter if I don't post for a month like I have done recently. In fact, my followers have gone up now that people realise I'm not trying to sell them anything (discreetly or not). Find me here.

I now watch with interest as I see other services grapple with what content to post and feel quite sorry for them. And in the meantime, I'm putting my energy into helping my clients to create content that is Instagrammable, tell their stories and generally be awesome.

Find out more about our PR and Rural PR Academy packages and get in touch if you'd like to chat about your own social media strategy. We offer a free phone consultation to help assess what your business needs (and what it doesn't).