Yep. That was me. I felt lost without my phone, even for a minute. Not because it meant I might miss an important call, but because I couldn’t check Facebook. Ridiculous.
A week ago today, I deleted the Facebook app from my phone and vowed to not check my Facebook online or update it for a month. You can read my reasons for it and what brought me to this decision here.
In the last week, this is what I’ve learned…
1. Checking Facebook on my phone was more of a habit than anything else.
I used to open my Facebook app and scroll through my feed anytime I had a spare second. Add up all those spare, little seconds, and I probably looked at Facebook at least two hours every day. TWO HOURS!!! And that’s just a rough guess. It was just a way to kill time, and “kill time” it definitely did. It was a filler for all sorts of things when I could have been doing something else.
The first couple of hours were really hard, and the first couple of days were pretty rough too. I kept trying to open up the app on my phone, but it was no longer there. It wasn’t that I really wanted to be on Facebook; It was just a habit. That’s it.
2. I didn’t really do much more than LOOK at what people were saying and doing, and (most of the time) I really didn’t care.
Let’s face it, for many of us, more than half of those on our friends list are people we don’t talk to, don’t interact with, aren’t affected by, etc., yet we spend our time scrolling through our feeds, reading what they have to say, looking at photos of what they’re doing, seeing silly quizzes they’ve taken. Why?
3. In the last week I have had more time.
I’m not saying I have found a way to add another minute or hour or two to my 24-hour day. I’m saying that all that time I would normally spend wasting on Facebook, I’ve found I can use that time to do other things. I have FINALLY finished reading a book that I started over a month ago, and I’m probably a quarter of the way through another just within the last three days. I have made almost 3 dreamcatchers, a hat, made progress on a baby blanket, gone on a couple dates, hung out with friends, worked on some organization, worked on my blog, and talked on the phone. It’s really amazing how my valuable time disappears when I’m habitually “checking” Facebook. Apparently our Facebook updates are so important that I can’t go 30 minutes without looking at it. Not sure how I ever survived before Facebook! (insert sarcasm)
4. I’ve been able to invest more in people.
I’m still a bit of an introvert, but I feel like I’m actually listening to people now more than I was when I was distracted by a social networking site. As I said, I’ve been on two dates with a guy who doesn’t even have a Facebook, and it’s so freeing. I like being able to talk to people without saying things like, “Did you see on Facebook….?” or “I saw on Facebook that….” It’s forcing me to get a life. With real people. With real interactions. With real conversations. With real connections.
5. I sleep better.
This one has probably surprised me the most. I didn’t realize how much Facebook was cutting into my sleep time. I would lie in bed and scroll and scroll until my eyes just couldn’t handle the bright light in a dark room anymore, or I would lie in bed thinking about things I saw on Facebook. If I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t get back to sleep, I would get on Facebook. As soon as I woke up in the morning… Facebook. I probably DREAMED about Facebook. That’s crazy. But this past week, I feel like I have slept more soundly, wake up less, and am asleep long enough & deep enough to dream. I wake up feeling more refreshed. It’s a good feeling.
Now, I’m only a week into this month-long challenge, but I’m curious to see what else happens this month. Instead of checking Facebook as soon as I open my eyes, more often than not, I’m doing my Bible devotion instead. Gotta put first things first.
Would you ever consider taking a break from Facebook? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!