4.01.2013

{Ramble} A Year Without Facebook

Although it's hard to believe, a whole year has passed since I was a member of the Facebook community. In case you need a refresher, I wrote about my decision to give up the "Book" here. I've been asked many times what life is like without Facebook so I thought I would dump some of my thoughts here.

Pros
  1. More time. Well, this isn't entirely true. Since I have given up Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram have taken the world by storm. I'm not sure how I could fit all my Pinstagraming time in if I still had Facebook and work, eat, sleep, etc. I also found myself compulsively checking my account throughout the day afraid that I had missed something.
  2. Less drama. Seriously, this is the thing I enjoy most about not being on Facebook. Between politics, unfriending, drunken status updates and embarrassing photos there is a lot of drama to be had.
  3. Focus on my "real" friends. Before I closed down my account I was spending a fair amount of time stalking people I hadn't seen in years just to stay in the loop. Don't get me wrong, I miss this sometimes. But it prevented me from putting the effort into the relationships that were really important to me.
  4. I discovered Twitter.  Yes, this seems hypocritical. I gave up Facebook only to replace it with Twitter? But I have created a Twitter feed that is pure entertainment for me. I like to follow people with funny, smart, entertaining, motivating tweets. Not to mention the occasional celebrity stalk, I mean follow. Most of the people in my life are Facebookers and not Twitterers, so this has eliminated most of the drama I ran into on Facebook.
Cons
  1. I am out of the loop. Facebook has become the way most people share about what is going on--good and bad. My Mom was talking to me about a family member's recent surgery and then remembered I'm not on Facebook and no one had told me. I really miss seeing the photos of my friends. Especially now that they are having babies. I have even missed some socializing events where the invite was distributed via Facebook only. Totally sucky.
  2. Connecting with new people. Over the years Facebook did help me connect with new people and reconnect with old. I miss this. It is really hard to meet new people in your thirties and I know being a part of this network would simplify some aspects of socializing.
  3. Website sign-ins. There are a lot of sites these days that require a Facebook login to register or to access special features which is super annoying.
Confession
Even when you "delete" your account, Facebook saves all your information and you can reactivate it at any time. I have logged in maybe 3 or 4 times in the past year. Mostly to see photos from my family and friends that are only posted there. But also for the occasional stalk. Once to get someone's contact information I couldn't track down elsewhere. Yes, I totally feel like I cheated.

Verdict
For the time being I am going to continue to be Facebook-free. It is the best decision for me right now. Who knows, this may change in the future. To be honest, I lack the self-control to use Facebook in moderation so the best thing for me is to stay the hell away. My name is Rachael and I am a Facebookoholic. But I hope my friends realize this decision isn't personal and continue to connect with me through phone calls, emails, this blog, Instagram and Twitter.

How do you feel about Facebook? Has it brought good to your life? Bad? What would your life be without it?

9 comments:

  1. I love this post. For me, I couldn't imagine giving up Facebook. But I agree, I don't always think it's the healthiest. I often say to friends, "Facebook is a stomping grounds for narcissism and depression." And I, too, have engaged in far too much stalking to be considered healthy. And yet, it's the photos and connections that keep me there. But I thank my lucky stars everyday this didn't exist when I was in HS and college. How badly must you feel for those kids?

    And meanwhile..twitter is kinda my new favorite thing ever. It's a great curator of news. And 140 characters forces people to be witty. And you know... E! news keeps me up-to-date on all the celebrity happenings!

    PS...I think you made some blog updates? They look ah-mazing. Love them.

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  2. Rambling Rach4/1/13, 5:20 AM

    Facebook is such a double-edged sword!Been trying to make some changes based on BYW. So far new bio, social media icons and actual information on my footer. More to come!

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  3. Wow! Go you! That is awesome. There is a part of me that really wants to delete my fb account. It annoys me most of the time now. One of the only reasons i still keep it is because i am par to of a music group that discusses their fav. albums at the end of the year - i find this ridiculously fun.
    New blog updates are awesome!

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  4. Rambling Rach4/1/13, 1:51 PM

    Thanks! I wish there was a way to be on FB and only have access to groups/events. Would take away a lot of the temptation!

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  5. Good post! I agree and at the begininng it was all about aquiring as many friends as possible. Now, I'm unfriending anyone who I don't talk to or anyone who I notice I just glance over thier posts. There were some that I met once or twice and I don't even read their updates. What kind of friend am I!? So, for me, lately it's been about keeping the people I know and care about.

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  6. *acquiring (lazy without spell check)

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  7. Rambling Rach4/3/13, 9:44 AM

    So weird how it has changed! I remember when you had to have a .edu email and there were no games, groups or photos. Now it has a life of its own! Just heard a piece on NPR about how Facebook is dealing with hate speech and in some ways they have more power shaping what free speech is than the Supreme Court.

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  8. Rachel Rachel4/5/13, 4:24 AM

    It would probably be wise for most people to take an occasional break. It has come in handy on a late night or two with the babe, but I suppose instagram, pinterest and twitter could probably fill that void.

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  9. I couldn't ever do it, but I totally understand where you're coming from. Some days it would be really nice not to be connected to the world, and I actually also found that I have a love for twitter. I'm also friends with enough people on Facebook that I can't post anything personal or meaningful, so it's really just there to stay in touch with people. And for stalking. You're totally right about that one.

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