For some reason, the first thing I do in the morning is check every single social media site I am a part of. After almost twenty minutes of lying in bed and pinning, I always save the best for last: Instagram, my personal favorite.

For those of you who don’t know what Instagram is (the reason that I just had to write that will be explained some other time), it’s a mobile app (meaning application, which I also feel like I need to say) that allows you to snap a beautiful photo and crop it into a filtered wonder for all of your followers to view.

What sounds like a simple task can be excruciatingly difficult. Scrolling through all the people I follow, I have recently begun to notice that all I see is a picture of dusk approaching, a friend of a friend’s cute Pomeranian in the Lo-Fi filter (one of my “go-to” filters) and most importantly, a boxed self-portrait with a polaroid-like border. With every scroll, I roll my eyes with irritation. I sometimes think, “People are using this app incorrectly.”

The worst part about looking through all of those cliché pictures is seeing mine amongst them. I too see a tiny dog on the street and, while the owner looks away, snap a photo and immediately publish it on the ‘Gram. Am I guilty of a “cropped selfie?” Of course I am. After all, the filters make my skin look great. And today, when I saw the sun setting, I pulled out my phone so I could publicly post the beautiful sky through the Inkwell filter (am I too knowledgeable about this app? Place your thoughts below.)

Once I post a picture similar to my examples (my examples actually root from things that I have done myself), my stomach hurts. Will my followers like the picture? Will they think I’m weird? Or…will they do what I do when they post a picture of the sky? Are they currently unfollowing me? All of these thoughts run through my head and I find myself dizzy, disoriented and scared.

I may have exaggerated a little bit, but the point is, that Instagram gives you the ability to be creative and I think everyone should take advantage of that. The downside to all of this is, I’ll probably never follow that advice. Here’s to another sixty photos of my blind dog Fancy in the 1977 filter.

You can read more from Travis J. Wright on his blog.

(Image via ShutterStock.)