In 2008, Facebook went under a massive change.
Because I joined. Ha, I kid.
Man, do you remember how Facebook used to be back in the day? Do you remember the Flair board? That was probably my favorite part.
Facebook used to be a truly social medium. I used it to have conversations with people, look at photos from their vacation, and collect flair. I sure loved that flair.
Now, in 2017, it’s a platform for the loudest and angriest parts of us. Sure, some photos of babies still sneak through, but it’s mostly dumb surveys, brands trying to sell their products, dog videos, and political rants.
2016 was a tough year for America. The political campaigns and the election was like nothing I’d ever seen before; it showed how divided America is. I remember scrolling through post after post of people’s outrage or arrogance – depending on the day. Admittedly, I unfollowed a few people – on both sides – that were too over the top. Gasp.
But there were hopeful posts, too. Status updates about how we would go back to normal once the election was over. I held my breath for that day.
And that day came. The day after the election.
Except, the election didn’t go how a lot of people expected. I’m not here to get political, but I will tell you that I didn’t expect what happened either.
So while I thought things would calm down on the World Wide Web, it actually got louder. Like, really, really loud.
And I was tired of it.
For the past couple years I’d toyed with deleting my Facebook account, but my husband always reminded me that it still held a purpose in connecting with people. And plus, you never really can delete your account. Even though I felt pulled and addicted to scrolling through Facebook with all of its ugly and pretty, deactivating the account wouldn’t be enough anyway, if I could just hop back on.
But it was November 9th, 2016, and I’d had it.
I didn’t care that I “needed” Facebook for my business. I didn’t care that I may miss out on a new baby announcement from a good friend. I started scrolling through my feed that was only full of anger and nothing else. And I started to unfollow.
In the end, I unfollowed everyone.
I toyed with keeping close friends and family, but instead of playing favorites, I kept only my husband. And he barely posts much anyway.
I did it just as a break. I could still see messages, I could still see events, I could still see groups, and I could still help a business manage their page. But I became a little ignorant of the goings-on, and it actually benefited me. I had less anxiety about the horrors of the world and I could focus on bringing a baby into it. And in March I took a full break from Facebook for a challenge, which I could actually do because I wasn’t held to my scrolling addiction of the angry feed.
So do I miss it? Not yet. Sure, I don’t see when someone got a new job or engaged, but I find that the people I still have connection to in real life tell me in some form. Sure, Facebook was – sadly – how I got my news, but now I have to be intentional about being informed, and I get to choose the volume of news thrown at me.
Will I ever go back and follow all my Facebook friends? I really can’t say right now. I still have Instagram, and I love Instagram, and that may be enough for me. Maybe Facebook is a great way to build my online business, but I also have to trust that there are other ways to do it.
So if you really need to tell me about your new baby, just send me an email.