How Depression Changed My Engagement "Strategy"

You’re exhausted from dropping your two cents on a bunch of accounts to blow up your social media around your personal brand.

  1. Drop a like

  2. Leave a comment

  3. Reply to a story

  4. Follow

  5. Repeat

You will inevitably grow your reach, follower count, and likely even your own content’s engagement (if your content is good). But inside you’re exhausted from trying to find accounts to rinse and repeat the process on.

It feels superficial and not fitting to who you are.

I’m not here to shame that style of engaging. It’s just one method of many. It works and it does make sense for a lot of people and brands who do need to blow up those metrics.

But in a way, my history of battling depression, anxiety, and some other things has forced me to rethink how I do everything. Even work stuff I break down to the nitty-gritty details (like how I engage on social media). In my darkest moments I've felt like the stuff I was doing had no meaning. I was just a robot going through the motions to get by. I couldn't possibly see my purpose if I just did what I thought I "should".

'Should' is a weird and heavy word for many.

One day I’m going die. I won’t give a fuck about if I engaged with 30+ different accounts every day, spent 2 hours a day in the DMs, hopped on whatever new platform is trending. But I will care about who I have let into the most intimate rings of my social circle and if I enjoyed the ride called life. We don't have that much time and we don't have enough energy to invest into an infinite amount of people.

Imagine you have 15 coins that symbolize your time and energy. You can give one energy coin to one person you think is worth it. You can take them back if a relationship is toxic or not working out. Who would those 15 people you pick be and why?

When it comes to social media engagement to me this means deciding who are people and brands I already love or find interesting enough to want to get to know better. I avoid thinking “will this get me lots of engagement” but rather “is this someone I’d genuinely enjoy interacting with and seeing on my feed every day?”

The way I view it, there are growth hacks and there’s HOW you grow and how it makes you feel in the long run.

I think a lot of people and brands are focused on the short-term pleasure of exploding vanity metrics. But if they put on their longterm vision goggles maybe they would also see the value in nurturing relationships that mean something to them. Growth online might be slower from having fewer but more focused interactions. But growth would still be an inevitable by-product of being genuine in your intentions.

The process feels more natural because it is.

  1. You see something.

  2. You actually like it

  3. You comment something thoughtful

  4. And maybe you follow if you love it

Now gather your 15 energy coins and go make a list of people you’d actually be happy to become friendlier with and start engaging with them on a weekly basis.

- Diana