Did you download your #2018bestnine? What did you think about it? Does it actually reflect your life in 2018?
Here’s another post inspired by the ladies at Crafty Ass Females! They dedicated their last podcast of the year to a recap of an earlier episode regarding the Instagram #2018bestnine, and maybe what’s wrong with it.
If you aren’t on Instagram or aren’t familiar, the #2018bestnine is an auto-generated grid of your 9 most liked photos.
The CAF’s argument is that the #2018bestnine of their most popular pictures are all selling something, but they aren’t authentically promoting who they are or how they live their lives. The reason for that is sad but it’s also a product of social media.
My “best” 9 were once again all sewing related. In 2017 that was cool. It meant I had finally solidified a relationship with the sewing community.
In 2018 what that really meant is I’d learned to optimize hashtags and posting times. That’s not to say I didn’t legitimately enjoy what I posted. But I definitely did it in a way to position myself and this site in the best light.
For likes, as they say. For “the ‘gram.” I was using the system to my advantage.
And if you judged me solely by my auto-generated “best” pictures, you might think I’m kind of one-dimensional. 2 of them aren’t even my own original work, they’re mere reposts the sewing community clearly feels strongly about.
That doesn’t necessarily bother me since it’s all pretty much “on brand.” But after listening to the podcast, I thought it would be a fun exercise to see what else I would want to represent my 2018.
So what I’ve done instead is gone through my 2018 posts and chosen the 9 I felt best illustrated who I am, what I believe is important, and the things I enjoy other than sewing.
Starting from the top left and moving across then down:
- The only picture I have this year with both of my brothers, who were both so deeply instrumental in shaping my life. I love and respect these men so hard.
- The one plant I’ve managed to keep alive, ever. It’s still going strong! And it’s named Sporegano now.
- One of the few pictures this year together with El Husbando, taken when he joined me in Canada. We had a great time drinking our way across Vancouver!
- Also from my Canada trip, the 20-year-old fangirl in me nearly lost it when I ran into the Goo Goo Dolls in my hotel lobby. The 40-year-old me politely asked if I could take a photo with my coworker and the guys were beyond gracious.
- A repost from my beer-centric account of the best food and beer combo we had the entire time in Canada. Taken at Parallel 49 Brewing, which we ate at twice in the 4 days we were in Vancouver (it was that good!).
- That weightlifting is a significant part of my life cannot be overstated. In October I hit my goal of deadlifting 250 pounds. This picture will always serve as a reminder of inner strength.
- My favorite image from the shoot for the first thing I ever made. I had just finished twirling in the half-circle skirt, something I’ve always loved to do. I was a tad dizzy and the fact that the photo is slightly out of focus makes me love it all the more. That’s real life.
- I’ll spare you the harrowing details of apartment hunting in Los Angeles and just say that our new one feels like our real home. We don’t feel suffocated here as we did for FIVE YEARS in our last place. This is the first picture I took in the new spot, right outside the front door.
- Beer, food, and democracy. The right to vote is too important not to exercise, especially when it can be celebrated with Belgian beer and grilled Mexican meat!
The average number of likes these posts garnered was 30. That’s it! I have over 700 followers, and less than 5% liked these. But that’s okay. I wasn’t posting these particular pictures for validation via likes.
I posted them because this is me. This is who I am. I’m a beer-loving, deadlifting, family-loving, black-thumbed, 90s girl who likes a good twirl and finally found space to breathe.
Maybe I should show more of that!
Would you have chosen different pictures for your own top 9? What other sides of yourself are being hidden by the Instagram algorithm? Let us know down in the comments!