I decided to start the new year off with something I have been dying to do now for quite some time: I gave up Facebook for the month of January. And here’s what happened:
- I realized and remembered that quality of relationships is so much more important than quantity | we’re only human. We seriously cannot keep up with as many people as we think we can. And when we try to, we get a sliver instead of the whole. This is exactly why Facebook doesn’t even let you see everyone’s posts, it manages it so you see people you interact with the most. But I have waayy too many Facebook friends, and yes, I did actually have some interaction with almost all of these people, I don’t generally add people I don’t know, but do I keep up with even half of them whatsoever? Not a chance. So why do I need these people on Facebook? What exactly is the reason I haven’t deleted more people? The fear of hurting someone’s feelings because I’m not investing in their life? The fear they will do the same? We each have our owns lives though, and it’s hard to focus on it when we try to focus on a million other people’s lives.
- I got closer to my son | this wasn’t just the physical act of being on Facebook, I never really was constantly on there, but I would scroll through often and I’d be in a fog from trying to keep up with what everyone was doing. I’m still friends with people I haven’t talked to in years, and I’m still friends with that girl I met from so and so’s party. It’s exhausting. It’s been amazing connecting with all different types people, people whom I met in the past and people I’m still very close with today, but it really drenched my soul and took away time and energy I could have used to bond with my son. Now I understand that Facebook does waayyy more than just take away our time – from the physical act of scrolling and commenting and liking – It’s something that you carry throughout the day. It’s a constant balancing act of trying to be happy and confident while sometimes feeling insecure scrolling through other people’s highlight reels. That isn’t real life.
- I spent more time picking up books and hobbies | instead of scrolling through Facebook and catching it up with people at night, I spent a lot more time under a warm blanket reading books on herbs, gardening, health & wellness. I spent time writing in my gratitude journal and printing baby pictures for a scrapbook. I even, oddly, spent more time petting my cat 🐱
- I felt a mental clarity I hadn’t felt in a very long time | I feel really weird saying that Facebook had a hold on me, but I just can’t simply explain why. But it did. And I think you could learn a lot about the power of Facebook if you decide to do a 30 day detox from it. I just felt fresh and focused on myself and making my life happier. My son’s life happier. I didn’t know what everyone else was doing and so I was able to focus on what I was doing.
- I felt things “really didn’t happen” because I couldn’t share to Facebook that it did | i would have times something funny would happen to me, and I’d want everyone to hear about it, or I had a great day sledding down hills with my boys, and so I had a twinge of sadness because my Facebook “world” didn’t know it happened. And then I felt another twinge of sadness that I would feel saddness from something this silly. But it was true. I felt a sense of emptiness at those times when I was doing stuff and not everyone knew about it. But then I grew to love it, and had a great day for the sake of having a great day, and not because I wanted everyone to know that I had a great day. Sadness turned to gratitude and than happiness. And now I don’t care if everyone knows what I am up to. It feels good to be private about some things, and it feels good to recognize that a tree still makes a sound when it falls in the forest even when no one is around to hear it.
- I felt less depressed because I wasn’t feeling FOMO (I’m pretty sure I can’t use that like I did, but I just really wanted to use this word in general). It means “fear of missing out”. And when I was on Facebook a lot, I felt it often. It was hard constantly seeing everyone doing something amazing and somehow it made me feel sad because I wasn’t apart of it. Weird. I know. But I focused a lot on my own negativity when I saw other people doing all these fun things that I somehow thought I was missing out on. Even things that typically I probably wouldn’t even have cared to do.
- Highschool had some challenging moments for me, so when I see old highschool friends and just plain old aquintances, they bring a little bit of pain back | Facebook got popular when I was in highschool, so naturally I am friends with a lot of old classmates. Here’s the thing though, some of them just simply bring up bad energy and stale memories of the past. and yet I still keep them around. Why? Life is way too short to always be carrying around the past. It’s heavy. Let it go.
My 30 day detox from Facebook had such a positive impact on my life that I will make a point to spend as much time away from it as I can. Actually, I still forget sometimes I’m able to use it. It’s like those 30 days reset my brain. I think my detox from Facebook had such a positive impact on me, I plan on doing it more.
Have you ever detoxed from Facebook? What was your experience like?