Sage the Blog : 8 Things I Learned from Deleting Facebook
It has been over four years since I had a Facebook account. Although I recognize this is not the norm, more and more people seem to be moving away from it. Personally, I have no plans to ever return to Facebook. However, the point of this post is not to tell you my way is better, but instead to share how deleting my Facebook account has impacted my life in a positive way. Here’s what I learned:
1. Who my true friends are.
When you no longer have a Facebook account, your social circle decreases significantly. You will often be overlooked when it comes to event invites, simply because they cannot add you to the event on Facebook. At first, this really hurt. However, instead of being upset by it, I chose to view it in a positive manner. Those friends who really cared if I was at an event or actually wanted to have a genuine conversation with me would reach out by phone or text to personally invite me to something. This fostered REAL friendships and honestly made my life much more simple.
2. How to make a REAL effort with friends and family.
Similar to above, when you are not on Facebook, people cannot just see what is going on in your life 24/7 through status updates and photos. It goes the other way as well. Although I realize I often have no idea what was going on with some of my friends, it makes me want to reach out to them in a more personal manner so I can catch up on what was new with them. I am now an active participant in their lives instead of just a passive Facebook stalker.
3. How to communicate more effectively.
It’s easy to use Facebook to avoid communication or communicate in unhealthy manners. Without Facebook, all you will have to rely on are your communication skills. This can really teach you to be more effective in the way you communicate.
4. How to be more intentional with others.
Not being able to just look someone up on Facebook requires you to be more intentional with them. You have to ask the important questions and not just make assumptions based on what their online profile suggests.
5. How to effectively use other social media outlets.
Without Facebook, I can spend more time investing in and mastering other (and in my opinion, more healthy) social media outlets
6. Setting healthy boundaries is important.
I used to spend a lot of time looking at old friend’s Facebook accounts. This honestly just made me feel bad and it was not good for me. Comparison is too easy on Facebook. Without Facebook, it’s easier to set boundaries with the kinds of things you know get you into trouble. It was almost like unsubscribing from a trashy magazine subscription. Ditching Facebook also helped me to be more careful about what kind and how much information I was sharing about myself online.
7. You will get significantly less “Happy Birthdays” on your actual birthday.
Whenever a friend I haven’t talked to in a while actually remembers my birthday (since Facebook cannot remind them), I always feel really special. A simple happy birthday is so much more significant when people remember without being prompted.
8. You will be less irritated.
Honestly, Facebook just irritated me. When people get behind a computer, they often feel this sense of anonymity that leads them to do some pretty entertaining (and frustrating) things. I didn’t want to read all about my friend’s recent breakup via status updates or see my uncle’s political rants. Not having to see everyone’s dirty laundry aired on the internet is AWESOME.
Do you have a Facebook account? Why or why not?