WHAT I POSTED VS. WHAT WAS ACTUALLY HAPPENING IN FOUR OF MY INSTA PICS

Whether it’s a beautiful moment in a sunbeam you happen to capture on your phone, a purposefully crafted flat lay shot with a DSLR camera, or something sexy you make happen with self-timer — Instagram is all of the above.

My goal with my Instagram account these days is to make people think critically, foster connection and remind people the platform is a selection, not a reflection, of reality. Sometimes I hit the mark. Sometimes I’m a little too deep. Sometimes I have a little too much wine and hit post.

But at the core, if I post something it means I don’t want to forget that moment for some reason or another.

I wrote a post on my old blog deconstructing some of my Instagram pictures and I thought I’d do round two with new photos since my use of the app has changed a lot since then.


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A big #mood

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What I was aiming for

It’s Saturday night and I’m feeling sassy. Maybe I’ve had a few glasses of wine, and I’m definitely going out. Might be a thirst trap (?) but it’s still classy so it passes as fashion focused.

Reality

Yep, this is a thirst trap. Not for anybody in particular, but holding it at arms length I guess I’d call it that. Sometimes when you are feeling yourself (and I definitely was because I had consumed two glasses of wine which is a lot for me) you get your girlfriends to be your personal paparazzi. I literally instructed my friend Sam to squat down lower because I’m 5’3 and my legs look like stumps if you take a photo of me dead on. I believe you’d say this is me “working the angles.”

Here’s the thing: I had made the effort to do my eyeshadow and put on a cute outfit and I didn’t want it to be wasted on the wedding *social I was going to. I briefly thought about making the caption something thoughtful but then I kept saying “that’s a mood,” and it sort of stuck.  I didn’t actually end up drinking the glass of wine in my hand.

*Side note if you are not from Manitoba: a social is where people drink for really cheap, dance, eat chips and salami on rye bread with mustard and buy raffle tickets all in a school gym or community club – not a fancy event. I was extremely overdressed.

Enjoy some outtakes for context.

 

Takeaway

This is not something I would typically post, but between the wine and the outfit — I was feelin’ myself. No shame in the game.

p.s. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck then it’s probably a duck. Same goes for thirst traps.

 

What I was aiming for

I’m spontaneous and fun! I spend my Sundays doing self-care activities and following my heart. I am carefree and independent.

Reality

This morning when I was about to start driving I put the keys in the car and started crying. I was fresh out of a breakup and emotionally fragile at the time and I knew I needed a change of scenery, so my parents lent me their car for the day.

I needed to be alone with my thoughts for a day and get some distance from my apartment. Being outside always makes me feel better and mends any wounds. It was really cold that day but I still went for a three-hour walk on the beach. I meditated on the pier and stared at birds. I walked around an empty tourist town. I went to the bar in town and ate fish and chips alone. On the way out of town, I stopped for gas and left my wallet in the bathroom so I had to drive back the next night to get it.

Takeaway

You have no idea why someone is doing what they are doing or what sort of place their vague artsy caption is coming from. Don’t assume.

 

What I was aiming for

I’m fashionable and I know how to roll with the punches and rock whatever look I’m serving that day. Also, look at that architecture!! I’m a bonAfide Instagrammer.

Reality

I hated my bangs. Like capital H hated them because they were so short. My friend Sam must’ve told me fifty times during this trip that my hair looked fine but for some stupid reason I wasn’t listening. I was feeling REALLY self-conscious, so I figured if I called attention to them nobody could say anything because I clearly already knew how weird they look???

Honestly even typing that out ^ makes me realize how crazy I am sometimes. Nobody cares in reality. Also I basically art directed this photo and it is very staged, but I’m not mad about it.

Takeaway

Not everyone on Instagram is as confident as they seem to be, including me. In fact, I’ll fully admit I care far too much what people think. I’m working on it.

What I was aiming for

Just a basic-ass selfie of me having fun with my friend at a sports-related event. I’m sure there are 1000 other photos posted that were similar to this one. Hockey!!!!

Reality

I was really struggling this day but I held it together and went out since my friend Michelle was only in town for 10 days and I didn’t want to bail. I was having a depressive episode and I had to let her know in advance I wasn’t feeling great, which was embarrassing. I ended up having a few beers which numbed the feelings for a while but I definitely had the booze blues the next day.

Takeaway

Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about, whether it’s internally or externally. I’ve noticed that women tend to get written off as ‘basic’ a lot whereas the label doesn’t tend to be applied to men as much. While it’s meant to be funny, I think it also sometimes implies that the person is one dimensional and incapable of deep thought and emotion — which isn’t true at all.


I’m trying to incorporate more honesty and transparency into everything I put out into the world. We all know Instagram isn’t a good reflection of reality, but a reminder never hurts.

What Comes Next has it’s own Insta page by the way and I always keep it real on there. Promise.

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