Quitting Facebook, One Month Later

It’s been exactly four weeks since I quit Facebook. I miss reading my friends’ posts. Every now and then something cool will happen, and I’ll consider posting a new status, only to remember that I no longer have a Facebook account. I also sometimes feel out of the loop, because often people use Facebook to plan events or share important information.

But I don’t regret it. I am enjoying my “face-to-face” relationships more, and gaining more from my conversations.  For example, someone might say to me: “Did I tell you about what happened the other day?”

Several months ago, I may have replied with: “No, but I saw it on Facebook. So is everyone feeling better?” And the person would have replied, “Yes, so glad that is over!” and then we would have changed the subject to something we hadn’t already covered online. But now, I don’t know everything that has happened to my friends. And so my response is more like, “No, what happened?” Then I get to hear the whole story, more in-depth, with more range of emotion than a few typed symbols can provide.

The Facebook newsfeed leaves out some of the most important parts of the story. It’s like the difference between watching a story on CNN about a hurricane, or talking in person with someone who actually experienced it. With a newsfeed, you get the basic information. The windspeed, the size, the wave height. But in person, you hear the thrill in their voice, the fear, the apprehension, the excitement. You see their hands shake when they recall the harrowing evacuation process. There is something MORE that happens when we connect in person—or even on the phone—something that black letters on a screen cannot convey.

Yes, I miss reading my friends’ posts. I don’t know what’s going on with hundreds of people – or what that one kid from high school ate for breakfast. But it’s been nice to enjoy conversations again, instead of cutting them short because “I heard it on Facebook.”

One month without Facebook? No problem. That’s only the beginning.

13 thoughts on “Quitting Facebook, One Month Later

  1. If given a choice between Facebook and a face-to-face conversation, I’d always choose face-to-face. But still, if the person lives in Ft. Smith, AR, or Faribault, MN, or Pittsburgh, PA, like our children do, then it’s nice to be involved on a day to day basis via Facebook. They groan louder than anyone else over some of my corny stuff.

    Who knows “crisscross applesauce” might just pick up their days, too?

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  2. Go Anna! Good job!

    Everything you said makes sense….for you and almost certainly for jillions of other folks too. Many people should probably take a look at their excessive Facebook use. Especially teenage girls.

    Ladies…Do you have enough narcissic, posed and “candid” flattering & provocative photos of yourself online yet?!? Uhhh, how many hundreds of photos/videos of yourself do you really want to post? Is there anything in this big wide world as fascinating and intriguing as you? Can you do ANY activity without taking a photo with your phone & posting it online? Evidently not.

    I am so thankful that I have already raised MY teenage girl and do not have to deal with the Facebook competition, one-up-man-ship, cattiness, gossip, competition for boys’ attentions & mean-girl bullying that current and future moms of teen girls must now deal with.

    Yes, of course, there ARE benefits to Facebook; but the problems mentioned are thorny and can be painful to immature minds. Heck, they’re painful to mature minds, if any actually exist! If not up for cutting out Facebook altogether, there are certainly some in America who can gain a better quality of life from a FACEBOOK DIET. Now that you’ve introduced the idea, maybe, HOPEFULLY, Miss Anna—-you will start a trend!

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    1. Funny, when I was on Facebook, every now and then someone would post that they were going on a Facebook Fast . Then several weeks or a month later I would see them posting again, when the fast ended. That might be a good happy medium for people who can’t quit cold turkey.

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  3. Great points Anna about the much richer conversations outside of facebook. I often wonder what the “conversations” I’ve had on someone’s wall would have been like in person, I’m sure they would have been much better.

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  4. You should always have face-to-face conversations with those closest to you in your life. But there are those people whom without FB you may never get the opportunity to have such interactions. This is why I’m sticking with FB.

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    1. Hi Sean, I agree that Facebook is great for keeping up with those outside of our close circles. I’m not totally against facebook, but the whole thing got a bit overwhelming for me. thanks for commenting!

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  5. Not a FB fan, but I love visiting my nieces’ pages, looking at their pics and reading what they post. How old does that make me, eh? IT’s also enabled me to connect with people I haven’t seen in years – some of whom I wouldn’t have chosen to see again, but they seem thrilled to have reconnected with me! and one can never have too many friends in the world! I also notice when I post my WP posts to FB ‘everybody’ I get double the number of hits than when I just leave it to WP – not quite sure what the technical glitch is on that one! Perhaps when it’s an automated stream from WP it only gets seen by the select group (about 100) of the over 600 ‘contacts’ I have FB. Every now and then I go on a FB chatter, but 99% of the time I just use it to check invitations to gig and events. Have you tried Google+?

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    1. Hi Alison, thanks for the comment! I’m currently looking into Google+. But I’ve already decided that, for now, I’m only going to use social media for professional networking to connect with other writers and people interested in the same topics. It’s not that I don’t like my friends (past, present, future, etc.) or want to keep up with them. But it’s overwhelming for me, and I prefer the pre-Facebook methods of keeping in touch.

      Right now I’m going through a personal “social media” boot camp as it relates to writing and blogging. I want to make intentional decisions, you know? I found a great post (maybe it will be helpful to you and others as well) called Facebook for Bloggers: A Short Guide — written as a guest post by Keri Welch, on Jeff Goins’ blog. If I ever get back on Facebook, I will definitely refer back to this piece.

      Happy blogging!

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