I know first hand that some people put on an act for social media. They might be, on the face of it, all about supporting others but then scratch the surface a bit, or, heaven forbid, meet them in real life and you might find yourself bitterly disappointed. Not so with Emma Campbell (aka @limitless_em).
Emma has loyal and engaged community on Instagram and she’s one of the truly wonderful things about this app. I’m really, really picky about who I follow there and so I’m often bewildered to hear of people finding that it can make them feel inadequate and unhappy with their lot. Honestly, it’s so simple… take it, or leave it. Instagram’s free content and if someone’s feed’s not for you then just move on.
Emma Campbell is a writer, speaker, mum of four and a cancer patient and these are the things she’s open about on her Instagram feed along with her husband Dave (@soberdave on IG). Dave was my guest on a previous episode and you can read all about him here.
The fear of ‘leaving too soon’ is something any parent can relate to and is the focus of Emma’s book, ‘All That Followed: A story of cancer, kids and the fear of leaving too soon’
Whilst there’s physical treatment and recovery that needs focus for any cancer patient, what about the emotional side… the mental challenges to wellbeing?
In this episode Emma shared her experiences and insights of three cancer diagnosis’ in nine years, being a single mum to four children, falling in love on the chemo ward, and support through an Instagram community. Her story is exhausting to contemplate but oh so inspiring.
I get the impression that Emma’s not that interested in the numbers. She understands how Instagram works but doesn’t seem to get too involved in the mechanics, choosing instead to talk, post, engage and make connections in a way that feels instinctively right for her.
Instinct feels like the key word here because it’s something that we spend a lot of our lives ignoring and I know Emma has talked about doubting herself/her content from time to time before remembering to only post or speak on Instagram in a way that feels right for her.
This honest, spontaneous approach is what’s organically grown her longstanding Instagram community. Firstly her content has depth. It provokes an emotional response in many and resonates with them because she’s speaking from the heart. Nobody wants meaningless engagement.
Secondly Emma attracts likeminded people. Sara Tasker, author of Hashtag Authentic is an Instagram expert and recently said, in her podcast, that Instagram Stories are a ‘tool for self-discovery… like therapy’. Spot on! In this episode Emma talked about how her Instagram community has really helped her navigate cancer. Emma shares her time and knowledge so generously and I know she’s a reassuring friend to thousands who’ve never actually met her in real life. She supports them and they support her too. Talking to and following Emma it’s clear that this community is a life-line for people who may otherwise feel alone, including Emma herself, because it may be that a cancer patient has many ‘real life’ friends, but perhaps none of them have been touched by cancer.
Listen to Emma’s story and start engaging with accounts that make you feel good or heard or supported and build your own community… all those people whose insight you’d never get to enjoy otherwise, millions of them from all over the world! Emma’s running the London Marathon this year, please join me in sponsoring her.
Your Next Episode Podcast – Louise Daniels and Aimee Cooper address midlife issues and sometimes crisis for those bursting into their 40s, 50s and beyond. Every Monday we chat with interesting people and experts about the variables, challenges, changes and opportunities of middle-age for men and women… hormones, parenting, family, divorce, mental health, relationships, menopause, health, sex, careers, lifestyle. Always upbeat, often funny, subscribe now to this educational and entertaining podcast. Join in the conversation on Instagram , Twitter and Facebook .