This Instagram tutorial was prompted by a question from a friend asking me if you can stop seeing someone in your Instagram feed without unfollowing them.
They were seeing a ton of updates in their feed from this one person but didn’t want to unfollow them because there would be the inevitable fallout from doing such a thing. So is there a solution?
Most of us have been in the same or similar situation on one social network or other. We friend someone and they turn into a prolific poster that fills up our timeline or feed. We otherwise like the person and don’t want to block or unfollow them as it would be noticed and then turn into a whole drama that nobody wants to have to contend with. So how can we manage situations like these?
Instagram apparently uses an algorithm that eventually quietens someone if you don’t interact with them for a while. Nobody quite knows how, or how effectively it works so you cannot depend on it to help you here. If you turn off notifications for the person and don’t interact with them in any way, in theory at least, you should see less of them over time.
If you’re setting up a new Instagram account the best thing is to make it private so you can manually control who gets to follow you and who doesn’t. If you have an existing account or the person you want to block was fine at first, you will need to try one of the following.
Stop seeing someone in your Instagram feed
You can sort of stop seeing someone in your Instagram feed but it takes a little effort. If you don’t want to block them you will have to manually mute their story in your feed each time one arrives. It isn’t ideal but is the only way I know of to stop their stories.
- Select one of their stories that you want to get rid of within your Instagram feed.
- Tap and hold the image until a menu appears.
- Select ‘Mute USERNAME’s story’.
This will only remove that individual story and you will have to repeat this for every one that comes up. Far from ideal but aside from using a third party app, this is the only way I know of controlling things.
Stop someone seeing your stories in their Instagram feed
If you don’t want to encourage the person to include you in their Instagram life story, you can elect to not have your own stories appear in their Instagram feed.
- Go to the person’s profile and select the three dot menu icon.
- Select Hide Your Story.
- Confirm if required.
This should stop your story appearing in that person’s feed. Like muting stories above, you would have to do this for each story you publish on the network.
The case for the block or unfollow
Somehow, social media has become so ingrained in our psyche that to be unfollowed is considered as serious as telling a real life friend that you never want to see them again. This could actually be a best friend but it could also be someone halfway across the country that you have never met and are never likely to.
Social media isn’t real life. It’s a pretend life where everyone tries desperately to make themselves seem cool and try to convince followers that their lives are much more interesting than they actually are.
While it has undoubtedly changed the way we live for the better, it has also skewed how we view relationships and the world around us. Rather than valuing our real friends, we count followers or retweets. Rather than spending time with those people that mean something to us, we sit beside them in a coffee shop in silence staring at our phones in our own little world. How is that a good way to maintain a relationship?
I would say that culling social media followers is a good thing. As long as you are as selective on your social network as you are likely to be in real life, it will benefit you massively. You will have more time for those who matter, have more energy to engage meaningfully with those you choose to and can use social media with the same kind of freedom it was initially envisaged to provide.
Spread yourself too thin and you don’t have enough value to give those who matter. Be selective with who you’re friends with on social media as well as in real life and you will have more time and energy for those people who are most likely to enrich your life.
I have culled all my social media accounts and feel so much better for it. Have you tried it? Would you try it? Tell us about your experience below!