Well-crafted visual content ... quotes that leave you feeling good inside
On Instagram, accounts promoting a healthy body and a balanced diet are becoming extremely popular. Whether it is a pretty staging of artistic yoga poses, pairs of sneakers treading on asphalt, breakfasts accompanied by an acai bowl and a detox juice, or an influencer with a perfect body in a swimsuit in a paradisiac setting, these account on Instagram are no longer a novelty.
Beyond these beautiful pictures, Instagram users are increasingly fond of accounts sharing inspiring quotes, conveying “feel-good” messages and anecdotes in which everyone can recognize themselves. Some publications containing only texts have thousands of likes, and almost as many positive comments.
Accounts like @amours_solitaires have more than 520,000 followers while only publishing loving text messages daily, or even the yogi Caroline @theyoginist who accompanies each of her photos with a mantra of positivism about one's body. We should also mention professional coaches breaking the taboos of burnouts at work and recently psychologists, or “psycho-influencers”, helping to fight against anxiety and depression thanks to their Instagram publications.
Psychologists on Instagram, really?
We have already seen pastry cooks, architects, sports coaches, so why not psychologists? Recently becoming a trend, they shine especially in the US. These psychotherapists who have hundreds of thousands of followers share tips every day, sometimes poetically, to help their Instagram community improve their mental health. In an article published by NBCNews, we learn that the number of people with depression increased by 52% for teenagers between 2005 and 2017. 18-25 year olds themselves had an increase of 63%.
It therefore naturally to follow online psychologists who address each in their own way to these increasingly socially connected generations. Dr. Nicole LePera @the.holistic.psychologist (568,000 followers) accompanies her followers daily with free psychological advice, whereas @askDrJess proposes weekly live streams in which she answers every question. Additionally, Lola and Nicole @mytherapistsays use humor to talk about sensitive subjects like anxiety or depression.
Some therapists and specialists like @benoitjacobofficiel or @eva_ledeme have even gone as far as proposing online consultations. However, like the majority of companies developing instagram accounts, even if the objective is to do good to your community, it remains a business lever: acquisition of new customers, increase in the number of consultations , or even the sale of specialized books, etc.
These tips are beneficial to some, but as for every activity involving an influencer and their community, the impacts shouldn’t be taken lightly, even more if they’re not shared by a certified professional. Anecdotes and positive quotes will never replace real meetings with a psychotherapist offering an exchange and a personalized follow-up.
We then distinguish two categories of influencers: One, qualified professionals offering small advice, in the same way that they could advise their patients to continue to feel better, even after a session. Second, “lifestyle” influencers without psychology expertise, who wish to offer more happiness to their community without finally availing themselves of any expertise.
Instagram and ethics
Whether it's an influencer promoting the latest lap belt, a mom influencer presenting a baby product, or a psychiatrist giving advice to an anxious follower, the ethics and professional conduct should never come second when it comes to promotion by influencers.
In 2019, WOÔ created its Ethics Committee with the aim of supporting advertisers and influencers in their professionalization on social networks, by providing a charter of "good practices". The example of psychologists working on Instagram falls squarely within this framework. For example, one should not give personalized advice in response to private messages, nor be advised by a “psycho-influencer” if it is outside the scope of the skills for which the latter was graduated.. The American Psychological Association appears to be working on guidelines to help these new social media therapists.
In the meantime, if you are looking to adopt a positive attitude or simply to change your ideas and boost your positive attitude by reading inspiring little “Feel Good” mantras, here are some accounts to follow without moderation: @amours_solitaires, @ciaoflamingo, @cpartout, @laissemoitedire.__, @toujours_a_fond.
“Do what is right, not what is easy nor what is popular.”
― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart