“See ya around Facebook friends! I will be taking a break from Facebook for the season of Lent!” is the Facebook status I read a couple weeks ago, written by a close friend. I was inspired to do the same..and so began my break from the biggest form of social media available.
I had heard of social media “fasts” in the past, but never really thought it would be beneficial for me. After all, there’s nothing wrong with staying in touch with friends through reading funny posts and viewing pictures. But as I read my friend’s status that day, I felt a sense of conviction. It hit me that I had started spending WAY too much of my time on Facebook. I have my phone in hand (or at least close) throughout most of the day, and Facebook was the app I always gravitated toward when I was bored or just curious what was going on with my friends.
The main problem, as many of you can probably relate, is that Facebook is not usually a quick visit. It’s similar to Pinterest, both of which I sometimes refer to as a “black hole.” You can SO easily get sucked in and end up spending WAY more time there than you originally intended! I was spending time here and there throughout the week that quickly added up into HOURS of “screen time,” mostly on my phone, just reading about what others were thinking and doing rather than THINKING and DOING things in my REAL LIFE.
My little Coleton just turned 1 on Valentine’s Day, and even though he can’t talk much yet, I know that he craves my attention! He was the #1 reason I decided to take this good long break from Facebook. Embarrassing as it is for me to admit, my time spent surfing Facebook was taking away time from being able to read to and play with Coleton! Of course I would still play with him, but I wanted to have more energy and time for him! Especially with some big changes coming up in our family, he needs my UNDIVIDED attention. I’ve heard so many times “they’re only young once,” or “enjoy it now, because time goes WAY TOO FAST!” It’s so true. The first year of his little life flew by, and I don’t want to miss anything, especially on account of something optional and trivial like Facebook.
As I considered doing what my friend was going to do, I realized that I felt pretty guilty about how much time I spent on Facebook. So, rather than let my guilt grow (which I knew would happen if I didn’t change or cut back) I decided to use this pre-Easter season to join a few of my friends, break my norm and not visit Facebook. The two exceptions have been to check two groups I am a part of that regularly communicate and give important information, and the other was to see if an acquaintance had her baby yet. I have only been checking these two things about once per week…and never when I am with Coleton or my hubby!
The second major reason for taking a break from Facebook was that it was stealing my joy. As we moms know, it is so easy to compare yourself to other moms or friends. The grass is always greener! (Read Heather’s post on mommy-comparisonitis for more on this!) My fast has given me a chance to settle into my groove as a mommy, and find contentment and joy without the pressure of comparison.
SO, I am very pleased to report to you that I have SO enjoyed the last two weeks of severely decreased and limited Facebook time! I have a newfound freedom with my time and energy. I find myself journaling and reading more. And of course, I find myself giggling and snuggling with my little man a little more too.
If you have found yourself in a rut, maybe it’s time to take a little break from something! Anything that brings you guilt or steals your joy is probably something you should cut out, at least for a period of time. Challenge yourself! There’s no better time to start than right now.