What do you do when you need a Facebook break
I deleted my Facebook account for a year and what happened next changed my relationship with everything.
In 2014 I was in a strange place in my life, and Facebook was feeding an ugly side of me. Envy, insecurity, fomo, I had it all going on. I needed a break, but I was too scared to take a break. The world would go on! I might not get invited to things! What would I do without the "connection" of Facebook?
After a weekend in Steamboat Springs, and a terrible misunderstanding about one of my posts, I decided it was time. I needed to shut it down. Keeping it open wasn't an option for me. I was too addicted. I needed it gone.
Before I deleted I went through and saved everything. I wanted to preserve these little snippets of my life over the years. My updates were cute things my kids said or how proud I was of them. Sure, they may have been superficial, but they were real moments in my life. Saving was essential*.
Once it was done there was a little detox period for sure. I worried that I would miss out on everything. How will I see what my friends were doing? How would I know that I was being left out? How would I feel without the ugly feelings of facebook envy. Those feelings passed fairly quickly as I dug into my real life. I started to have interesting conversations with people that didn't start with "I saw on Facebook that you....". They told me stories about their kids and their lives. I felt like I was getting the real version and not the carefully crafted Facebook version. It was so great ,and I felt even more connected.
Once I settled into my Facebook free life, I began to create again. I took my old twin lens camera with me while traveling and captured moments on film. I had so much time to read and write and breathe. My anxiety lessened and I got connected with, not only my friends, but with myself.
I am back on Facebook but my relationship with it is less intense. I rarely post and try to read only once or twice a day. When I feel myself getting sucked in, and scrolling for no reason, I have to check it and move on. No longer do I keep a Facebook tab open at all times, and I'm very quick to delete the app from my phone if I open it too often. I always say balance is the key to a good life. It is especially essential here.
*You can still save your Facebook data, do it!