This week I have Krimsey Lilleth. She’s the author of The Cajun Vegan Cookbook, and was the owner of Krimsey‘s Cajun kitchen, the world's first vegan Cajun restaurant. Due to Covid, Krimsey made the tough decision to close her North Hollywood restaurant in Spring 2020. She knew she wanted to share her recipes with her fans so they could re-create their favorite dishes at home, which is what inspired her to write her first cookbook.
Last year I released my full episode with her, which can be found here. Today, here's an except from that show. It's the segment where Krimsey dicusses her decision to leave social media. These days it seems like you have to have a strong social media presence if you want to have your business succeed. But it’s definitely a double-edged sword. How much of your time is being taken up by it? Does it really matter at the end of the day? How had her life changed since making the decision to delete all of her social accounts? I’d love to hear what you think. Are we all just caught up in the hamster wheel, and it’s a huge waste of our time?
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If you're listening to this episode, I'm willing to bet that you're probably at least a little bit active on social media. You probably found this episode because of a social media post I did. Today's guest is Kinsey Lillith. And she's going to talk about why she quit social media for good. I'm Chris spear. And you're listening to Chefs Without Restaurants, the show where I speak with culinary entrepreneurs and people working in the food and beverage industry outside of a traditional restaurant setting. So this is actually an excerpt from a longer conversation that I had with cremonesi. Last year. Maybe you heard that episode, but if you didn't, I'll link it in the show notes. So crimson came on the show to talk about her new book, The Cajun Vegan Cookbook, as well as her decision to close her restaurant for good during the early days of COVID. But one of the most interesting parts of our conversation, and it kind of got buried at the tail end of the show, is that Kinsey decided to completely give up social media. And she did this right as her new book was coming out. Most people, at least I'd assume, when they have a cookbook coming out want to spend the next couple of months promoting it on social media. But she decided she wasn't going to do that. She found that while there were many good aspects of social media, it ultimately wasn't good for her mental health or good use of her time. While I'm not quite ready to give it up completely, I'm trying to find a better balance myself. As I work on growing my own personal chef business, as well as a podcast and community. I know I spent a lot of time in the trenches of social media. I've made some amazing friends and have had opportunities I don't think I ever would have had otherwise. But it can also be a time suck. And it can also feel like you're spinning your wheels. Sometimes it's easy to spend hours creating dishes and then photographing them, trying to get the lighting, right, thinking about the caption, the hashtags, the description, you post the photo. Three days later, there's like 25 likes. Is that a good use of your time? I don't know. So I'm not saying you should give up social media completely. But maybe you are someone who has to go all or nothing. I thought crumbs, he made a lot of interesting points and wants to share this as a counterpoint to all the social media experts. And I'm using air quotes here that have so many of us working so hard to create content. So tell me what you think. What's your relationship with social media these days? Are you all in? Are you trying to find a balance? Or have you thought about leaving it completely? Let me know. Feel free to DM me on Instagram or drop a comment when this is posted. You can find me at Chefs Without Restaurants. And this week's mini episode has been brought to you by the United States personal chef Association and hire a chef. The show will be coming right up after a word from our sponsor. Are you a personal chef looking for support and growth opportunities? Look no further than the United States personal chef association. with nearly 1000 members across the US and Canada. USPCA provides liability insurance certification lead generation and more. Consumers can trust that their meal experience is ensured and supported by USPCA. And now for a limited time, save $75 on new membership and get your premier listing on hire chef by using the code tax break 2023 at uspca.com. Plus, if you have products or services to sell chefs and their clients showcase your business on hire chef and USPCA websites with our great introductory packages. To learn more about membership advertising or partnership opportunities, call Angela at 1-800-995-2138. Extension 705 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Well, one of the big things I kinda want to talk about is I know that you quit social media, which is like, like one of those big things right now I feel like some people are totally into that. Like that's what they need. And others are like, Oh my God, how do you survive without it? So when did you do that? And like what prompted that?Krimsey Lilleth:
Well, I did it the day after my book release. I have the best publisher in the world because they took well, so backing up with it. When we first started negotiating on the contract, I was like, Look, I am planning on getting off social media, like I had it for the business. I don't want to do it anymore. Just a heads up. Like I'm not going to be the one to you know, do a bunch of promotion after the fact. You know, I just want to write this book. Is that cool? No, yeah, totally fine. Can you keep your social media up until the book comes out? And I was like, of course. So I did some like, you know, mild posting here and there, just you know, leading up to the book. And then when it launched, I was like, Okay, bye. Everyone's been fun. But you know, hey, another thing for me that none of you want me to do?Chris Spear:
Was there anything that like one or two specific things where were you just like, I'm at the point. I just don't need this in my life. Like it's a time suck and I have other things I want to be focusing on.Krimsey Lilleth:
That's exactly right. I think that it's so many things, but I'll try to list I think, like you said a big one. That's just the time suck. Even if all you're doing is posting your own stuff, and you don't ever look at your newsfeed, that's still a pretty significant time investment. And I already felt like I don't even now I don't have, you know, a normal job. I'm just writing and sort of dabbling, but I still feel like I don't have enough time in the day. So and this is being off social media. But also I took note of like how I felt when I interacted with social media. And for the most part, I felt mostly like drained, or that I had just become a temporary zombie, and then snap back. And I was like, where did that 40 minutes go, or even sometimes six minutes, like six minutes is important to me, life is short. And then I guess on top of that, I mostly only use social media in the past for promoting something. So I had a Instagram food blog before the restaurant, and then I had the restaurant. And we had all these pages my sister mostly ran, but they were always for promotion. And I just felt like having to promote something was also taking away from my energy, which I would rather use on, you know, writing another cookbook, or opening another restaurant, I'm not going to do that. But you know, you get the theme.Chris Spear:
And like, as the algorithms change, like, you don't even get that much return. Like when I think about like, what I'm putting out on Instagram, like, I'm gonna break out my camera, and I'm gonna shoot a video and post a reel. And then after like, three days, you're like, oh, like 42 People like this? Yeah. Like, it's exact. Was that worth it? Like, I spent time like shooting this video and editing and posting and thinking about the hashtags and tagging people? And like, literally 42 People saw this, like, what did this do? This didn't move the needle on like anything. And I didn't like love the process. Like, does anyone love the process? Unless there may be like, a 13 year old who enjoys dancing in front of a camera, but like, yeah,Krimsey Lilleth:
I don't know, I think some people do. And, you know, I will say that, like, my experience with social media hasn't been like completely negative from start to finish. I have, you know, I've had fun making videos and goofing off with friends and stuff. And, you know, I've met people. But I would say that when I take a huge step back and look at my experience, overall, I'm like, Whoa, how many hours, days, weeks months, I have no idea how much time has been sunk into this weird imaginary world where, you know, if I'm being honest with myself, I don't see any of these people ever. Like, they're sort of like, they could be bots. And I wouldn't know. And I've just been as I get older, I'm trying to focus more on on like in person connections, and, you know, taking a walk and saying hi to the neighbors, rather than opening up my phone and seeing what people on the internet are doing.Chris Spear:
Well, that's where I've really tried to make it about the personal connections, like I use it for really building connections with people, you know, like, I'm spending more time DMing people and talking to them, you know, I see a photo of something they did, and then asking a question about how they did it and building a community through that. I mean, I don't know that I'd have the podcast without social media. Like when I think of all the people who've come on the show, and I've been on their shows, it's all people I've met just through social media, for the most part, they're not people I'd ever known otherwise. And it's been amazing. I've met some of the best people in my life. But I've also tried to convert it into real world interactions, you know, like, Is it someone I can, you know, meet up with in DC, and we can grab dinner and become friends like offline as well. That's really cool. IKrimsey Lilleth:
think that that is about the best way you can use social media. And I think, speaking personally, I am somewhat of like a solitary person. I'm not like I don't want to see people or hate people or anything like that. I love people. But I do have a capacity for like, how many relationships I can maintain. And I found that maintaining all of these online relationships was quite exhausting for me. And at a certain point, I felt kind of like crushed under the weight of having all of these connections, which kind of sounds crazy. And unless you're someone like me who's experienced something like this, and I just thought, like, there's no reason for me to be stressed about this. I don't have to do this. And I will be sad to like, lose some of these connections, but the important ones will will go on.Chris Spear:
Yeah, I mean, if people are really your friend, they'll know how to find you. Right? Like they'll have your email address or a phone number or something. Yeah,Krimsey Lilleth:
when I still do a newsletter, which is not really much news, it's sort of just like bantering. But I do have people that use I used to be connected to on social media, they'll respond to my emails, and then we'll have these kind of same DM conversations, but it's much more condensed.Chris Spear:
And it's always weird when like, someone disappears out of your sphere, and then maybe sometimes they reappear, like there's people like, wow, I used to see them all the time on Facebook, and I haven't seen them forever. And then you look it's like, oh, I think they've deleted their account. I don't even know they're gone. And this person they're gonna find my only connection to them was like this random app that I had on my phone.Krimsey Lilleth:
Yeah, it is. Yeah, that's another interesting point is that all of these things we're building they're all still owned by someone else and not to get to you No anti meta or anything, but it is kind of scary how your livelihood can be wrapped up in someone else's choices. Like I think Facebook was down recently for a bit, and everyone kind of freaked out. Oh, yeah, I think that was after I was gone. But, you know, I didn't even notice, obviously. And I heard about it later. And I kind of felt the pain of all these people who were like, Oh my God, if my Facebook page is gone, like, I've just lost connections to 1000s of people that are really important to me and personally, or for business or whatever. And so, yeah, I was like, Okay, well, I don't, I don't want to ever be tied up like that again.Chris Spear:
Or, like, when you think about like, it hasn't happened, me, but these people who's like, Instagram gets hacked and have to start over, right? Like, he's got great. You've got like, 10,000 followers, or like, if you're a celebrity, like a million, and then you're back, like, day one, start again, and like, makes my stomach hurt. You can only friend request 20 people a day or something, like a slow build to like, get back up there. Because, I mean, it's a lot of work to do that together. You know, I have like 5000 followers and like, if tomorrow I had none, you're like, I think I just be like, I'm done. I'm not if I have to start from scratch or something like that. I just throw in the towel and be like, I'm not doing it.Krimsey Lilleth:
Well, you know, and that's why I decided to delete my page. A lot of people said, like, why don't you just pause it or like, you know, you can go dark or whatever. And I was like, You know what? No, no, this has to be this has to feel very permanent, like you said, because once it's gone. You don't really want to start over and I just decided that that's not something I want in my life right now. And I need to like take a really solid action and make sure that I don't get sucked back in. Go toChris Spear:
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