On February 28, 2018, I logged out of Facebook.
I did this for these reasons:
- I wanted to spend more time with my family. It’s such a time waster!
- Things that happen on there can be emotionally exhausting.
- My attention span and patience was decreasing by the minute.
- I needed to attend to my mental clutter.
At first I was slightly panicked at not having access to it. That’s not completely true though, I could still access it, because I could log back in at any time, but my brain somehow still allowed panic. Once I’d made the decision however, a weight lifted! I felt free! The first day came, and I picked up my phone….. and put it back down again. I confess that this happened quite a bit in the first few days. Simply out of habit!
This is what I learned:
There is life outside Facebook.
I was worried people would forget that I existed as a human being. That I’d not be invited to things, because let’s face it, “events” don’t come in the form of an invitation anymore (unless it’s to a children’s party). Turns out, I made a new friend and our families have spent many weekends over meals chatting for hours this past month. The fear of missing out was unfounded.
I’m more present. And have buckets more time.
Not looking up from my phone when my children speak to me. That right there is worth quitting Facebook.
I don’t have to think of my life as a status.
What have I done that’s Facebook worthy to post about. Uh uh. Gone. No more doing things because other people were doing them. Now I’m doing for my family.
People remembered me.
I’m part of a group of women who have suffered miscarriage. And although I’m not the most vocal of the more than 40 women, they didn’t forget about me. Instead they sent a happy birthday message to my littlest little person. Which brings me to my next point…
It turned out to be not all about me.
This online community of women made me realize that Facebook can be good. It’s given us a platform to encourage, support, laugh, and cry with one another. And I haven’t been able to do that. But it’s something that I’d like to. To love my neighbor as myself.
Did I conquer the reasons that I logged out for?
I don’t feel the urge to log on. To know what is happening every second of the day with people, some of whom I see quite often and should really know better by talking to them face to face, rather than through my phone. And I’m spending more time with my children.
I no longer scroll for hours through posts that make me feel bad about myself.
My attention span has increased from that of a goldfish. It still needs work though, so does my patience. But it’s better!
I can think more clearly and have more space in my brain. It’s the only way I can describe it!
So, where to from here?
I’m sure that tomorrow will bring new realisations. I don’t foresee myself spending as many hours scrolling. Tomorrow will tell.
Have you gone off social media? What insight have you gained?