The number of people leaving Facebook is growing according to numerous articles. I myself left Facebook over a month ago. I have to admit that the first 2 weeks were rough. I was a Facebook junkie. I posted probably 7 or 8 times a day on average and had quite a number of "friends". So, leaving the social media site was not a walk in the park for me. That's kind of sad, but that's the way it was.
But by week 3 I found myself thinking less and less about it. And now I don't miss it at all. I did compensate a little by posting slightly more on Twitter, but to be honest I still have not realized the appeal of Twitter and do not find it very satisfying.
So what was my motivation for leaving? Simple... It's a distraction at best. At worst it's a hotbed for gossip, hatred, anger, and even a spring board for infidelity. It serves no true purpose other than to give a false feeling of acceptance and validation.
Disclaimer: This is not to say that everyone who uses Facebook is wasting their time or committing wrong. I have very dear friends on there still who are great people who simply enjoy the fellowship, including my own Fiance.
But, often the bad outweighs the good. So here are 6 reasons why leaving Facebook will greatly benefit your life, time, and relationships:
1. Time... We live in a world of media distractions. Television, Movies, Books, iPad, iPhone, Computers, Social media, Music, etc.. Your life will be enhanced the more of these you remove from the equation. Sacrificing 2 or 3 of the things that cause you to miss out on building REAL life relationships can do amazing wonders for your self-esteem and self-reliance. Pla
2. Privacy... We do not even fully grasp yet at how much Facebook is using your info for their various projects and advertisers. That is one aspect of Facebook's privacy breakdown. The second is the things you post. Do you remember when your friend went to the store to get their favorite brand of coffee, and you didn't even have to know about it? Now you know when they leave, what they are getting, and when they come back home, because they either post about it or their phone "checks in" from their various locations. Your friends know what you are watching on Netflix, What you are listening to on Spotify.. And why? I mean there are settings that turn off these features, but you practically need a blueprint to find how to shut them off. And I guarantee you that even though you shut off a feature, internally Facebook is keeping track.Go off the grid! Take control of your life again.
3. Relationships... I read an article recently that said that Facebook is destroying relationships. I experienced this myself. Some thought my form of humor was annoying. Some found my political posts were not in keeping with their beliefs and after a heated debate they blocked me, making any future real life encounters destined for awkwardness on a grand scale. It is destroying the real world for the sake of this virtual fantasy world where saying things in the moment have no real immediate consequences. But at the end of the day you still have to eventually see these people face to face. So shut up! And the best way to do that is remove Facebook all together and live in the real world.
4. Marriage... This needs a category beyond relationships. Another article I read online said 50% of all divorces site Facebook somewhere in their statements as part of the reason for the divorce. 50%!! In my opinion, if you are getting married, or are currently married, you have no business being on Facebook. Especially men. Your wife needs you, Your kids need you. Even if you just spend 30 minutes a day on Facebook, it's still time you could use fixing things around the house, reading, talking to your spouse and/or kids. There simply is no redeeming value beyond getting attention for clever posts or pictures that you post for the world to see. And, the only attention that you need at this time would be from those in your own home. Again, I am not condemning anyone who is married and on Facebook. I already miss out on hearing about upcoming events and other activities because people post them to Facebook thinking that covers everyone. But it's a small price to pay for me to nurture my upcoming new life with my wife and child. "Water your grass" and lead your family and you will have a happy marriage. You cannot do this if you have your face glued to a computer screen.
5. Infidelity... Again, another category that branches off of marriage. "What appears to be a harmless glance, turns to romance, and homes are divided..." (Steve Green song) Facebook has a way of making you entertain thoughts like "I wonder what my old high school sweetheart is up to." Or.. "It won't hurt if I have a private conversation with this woman, I'm just asking her how she's doing." It starts out innocent. But Satan loves innocent beginnings. He's like a kid in a candy store. You just let him in to your world where he can put "What if?" thoughts in your head. And the next thing you know your entire world is crashing down around you for nothing. It's like taking that first drink of alcohol. Run away from it. Get off of facebook and cling to your family. Cut yourself off from these things and you will reap huge benefit. Sacrifice is what you got married for in the first place. And trust me, you aren't missing much. Unless you just can't wait to read about some person you barely know's trip to the zoo and how the giraffe made the funniest noise.
6. God... There is nothing intrinsically sinful about Facebook. It's a social gathering site like the mall, or the coffee shop. However a lot of people cannot shake it. They check it incessantly throughout the day. They take pride in the amount of responses or likes they get. I know I did. So a lot of things can bring sin about in your life: pride, envy, hate, sexual sin, greed, etc... When you leave Facebook, do your best to fill that void with prayer and study of His Word. Give it two weeks, and I promise you won't even miss it. You will have more energy, more desire to get things done around your house. You will go against the "In" crowd, which feels amazing. You will have time to write, read, or do whatever hobby or activity you enjoy the most. For me I got back to this blog which was my first love before Facebook was even a foul thought in Mark Zuckerburg's head. And most of all you will have the opportunity to do something with your life that is more pleasing to God. Some have found a niche on Facebook where they can build on their ministry.. and that's great. Facebook CAN be a great thing if used for the Glory of God. But talking about how your kid pooped for the first time in the potty is not necessarily earth-shattering news for the Kingdom of God. Not a sin.. just not great time management.. and really.. nobody cares!
But like I always say.. What do I know?