Six months (Facebook) clean.

I have been Facebook clean for a little over six months. (Remember when I quit? It was great. You can read about it here: In which I have an awesome coffee date and quit Facebook.)

I love it.

These are some of the things I have learned:

  • It is so much easier to get a hold of people, and organize social events, via Facebook. Almost no one regularly checks their non-FB email anymore.
  • I breathe easier without a Facebook account. I don’t have comparison anxiety, I don’t roll my eyes at bullshit drama, I don’t hate-stalk people who make me feel shitty about myself (because of what I think and allow, not because they are actively trying to make me unhappy).
  • I think Facebook is a brilliant, and fun, marketing tool and would very much like to be involved in that world, but on a personal level, I really don’t like it.
  • I miss seeing pictures of everyone, tiny people in particular.
  • Sometimes I feel like I’ve alienated myself from people. That, because I have made this decision for me (and my family), they feel I am judging their Facebook usage. (I am absolutely not. It was toxic to me and I needed to quit. If you’re happy using social media, more power to you! If you can separate yourself from The Bullshit, I am thrilled for you. I tried and could not, so I let it go.)
  • I enjoy (the shit) out of meeting up with people in person (or having regular telephone dates with long-distance folks) to chat about their lives.
  • I control my relationships, and I have learned a lot about these relationships (good and really, terribly awful).
  • I feel much better about my interactions when I don’t feel obligated to respond to something as soon as I’ve read it. (The notification that you’ve read a note in Facebook makes me crazy. I feel stress and anxiety when I feel I have to respond before I’m ready, just to save face.)
  • My world is not instant. I need time to think and plan.
  • I am private. Very, very private.
  • I neither need nor want public accolades. I feel very uncomfortable when a spotlight is shone on me and my life.
  • I don’t have to be friends with people I don’t actually like based on bizarre social protocol.
  • My family is not for your consumption.

Here’s the thing, I deactivated my account, I didn’t have it deleted. Like my WoW ‘toons, it’s still floating in the ether somewhere, waiting for me to come back. And, like WoW, I might come back. I might decide that I am tired of missing out on pictures of babies, new houses, pub nights, pregnancy bumps and weddings. I might give in to my frustration at having lost contact with a few folks I really do miss. I might want to interact with my favourite local businesses, especially those who do not use, or regularly use, Twitter.

I might go back to Facebook. But if I do, I’m doing it on my terms. I know who I want in my life and I know who is virulent*. I know (better) who I am and what I want, and I’m not willing to compromise that.

Quitting Facebook has helped me get to know myself better. I have been face-to-face with some serious animosity because of it. (Seriously. I still can’t quite figure that. It absolutely does not matter to your life that I don’t have a Facebook account. It just really doesn’t.) Like a few other things I’ve done in my life, this further proves that it was a necessary step. I tend to grow a lot more, and a lot faster, when I’m up against an ugly situation. Fast-tracked. It’s not easy, but it looks pretty good in retrospect.

How are you folks with Facebook, and other social networking websites? Do you find you strike an even balance? How do you do it? Have you ever quit, or taken a break?

Trooper – Raise A Little Hell

UNT.

*BTW, how is this not one of the best words? Ever. I’m in love.

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12 thoughts on “Six months (Facebook) clean.

  1. This is amazing. I go on Facebook breaks, just because I can’t separate it from my day-to-day life. I’ve considered deleting it, but defriended and unfollowed enough people to just keep the ones I want to keep in touch with in my feed and so far that works for me. I’m incredibly impressed you’ve lasted six months. Most people say they’re done for good aaaaaaand less than a week later, they’re back.

    • Hah! I did the “I’m going to take a break” thing and went back immediately after, re-addicted after my One Month Challenge. It was easier to leave this time ’round (I’d faced a few things that totally soured me, so it felt better to give it up). Make no mistake, if I go back, I will get re-addicted embarrassingly quickly if I’m not careful.

      I love the option to block/unfollow people. It’s awesome when you’re just tired of reading their shares and vaguebook updates, but you don’t want to unfriend them…due to that bizarre social protocol. 😉

      Thanks for commenting, Jennie! I totally appreciate that. 🙂 Have an awesome day, and weekend!

  2. Cristina says:

    I honestly didn’t understand your reasons for quitting FB before but I get them now and why it would be toxic. I will say that I use the hide/block feature more than the unfriend button because of social protocol but I think most people forget you exist after they’ve been blocked so it’s easier to delete them if you are able to. FB also makes it way too easy to keep track of some people that it would be better to let go of but, on the whole, I doubt I’ll ever let it go. Because then I’d actually have to talk to some people in person lol.

    • Awh. I’m sorry it was unclear – I guess it was super out-of-the-blue if you don’t live in my head. Hah! Thank you for understanding, Cris. AND yes. I used that block/unfollow/hide option a lot and absolutely forgot I was “friends” with a few people, too. (I will also admit to pruning my friends list on occasion.)

      But yes, it’s the losing track thing that gets me the most. Hah, hence the reason I requested that information of you the other day. I haven’t chatted with certain people for so long AND haven’t congratulated them on huge life events (or really tiny, depending on your perspective).

      Hah. I save “in person” for special people. And pachos. Always. ❤

  3. I think you’re awesome for quitting facebook. I deleted the app from my phone, but still have my facebook account. I found that I was using it WAY too often when it was on my phone, but my usage has been curbed since deleting the app.

    • Hah – thank you! I’m glad nixing the app worked for you. It amazes me how much time I can spend on Facebook…doing absolutely nothing. At all. (Now I do that with Twitter! Hah. Good grief.)

  4. suzymmarie says:

    I think it’s really good that you did this and that you decided, “hey, you know what? this isn’t doing anything for me”. I bloody hate Facebook but I still keep it haha. I think you can do it on your terms, I certainly do (i.e. I mostly ignore it except for the bits I’m interested in haha)

    • Thank you. 🙂

      Hah – I hated and kept FB for years, lady. I know how you feel. Honestly, An Event was the catalyst to my quitting. If certain things hadn’t happened, I’m sure I would still be on FB. I am both happy and sad that life changed the way it did, but I would not change things. I’m glad you interact with it on your terms. I’m thankful that FB allows you to siphon the things you do, and do not want to see. It’s pretty helpful.

      Thank you for the comment, lady! (I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to reply. It’s been A Week.)

  5. Amazing that you’ve gone 6 months!! Props to you! I think I went about that when I quit Facebook for a while. I also actually deleted my entire account, which was great for me because it was like a fresh start when I went back to it.

    I also noticed that people forgot about inviting me to things when I didn’t have a Facebook. And I definitely missed seeing my friends pictures. But I also totally get the comparison thing and the hate-stalking thing… I can fall into that all too easily when I can do better things with my time!

    And I love social media. I really do. Twitter is a blast. I am slightly addicted to Instagram. Tumblr, Pinterest! SUCH FUN! But Facebook really is the most frustrating social media for me. It’s better the less I’m on it, so outside of work I try to limit my exposure to it.

    ALSO I am taking a break in Paris. NO social media whatsoever for the entire time I’m there. I’m excited. It will be nice to have the chance to breathe, because my social media is connected to work. So even if I’m not answering work emails I still get notifications and see work related things on Facebook. Not this time. 🙂

    • Thank you, darlin’! 🙂

      I’ve been thinking about that, deletion, recently. There may be an instance (of which you are aware) that might bring me back in a professional capacity and I don’t want to re-activate my old account. I would prefer to begin anew. It might make the relationship easier, if there is to be a relationship.

      Hah! Right? I know that I’ve been a bit of a headache to a few people regarding event planning. (I know because they are passive aggressive in their “this would be easier if you were on Facebook” bullshit. Of course it would, but I’m not, so either invite me via text, email or actual phone calls, or don’t. S’all good.)

      I want to learn tumblr. I like the idea of tumblr and holy moly are people funny there (I gather, anyway, from pinned tumblr things. Because I am a SuperWhoLock fan). I agree though, social media is fun. I LOVE Twitter (which, I’m sure, no one’s noticed. Ever. At all). Facebook is a funny social media cousin. It’s great for touching a larger number of people, because everyone is on it, but it seems a bit less sharp to me. It’s easy, but not the brightest crayon in the box. (This is, I am sure, largely due to my “fuck Facebook” mentality.)

      I am excited for your break. Not because I don’t want to read your tweets and emails, because I already miss them both, but because it’s so nice to unplug. Love. 🙂

      • LOL people were super passive aggressive about me not being on Facebook, too. FORCE THEM TO USE EMAIL. 🙂

        I agree that Facebook is less sharp than Twitter. I feel like many of the people who would post witty and interesting updates just don’t bother doing so on Facebook based on the audience or the friends they have, while they’re much more fun to follow on Twitter. If that makes sense… I am jetlagged…

        Anyway, BREAK WAS LOVELY. I shall send you an email soon, I hope. ❤ Can't wait to get all caught up on your life, too!

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