Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Life without Facebook

A few friends have been asking how I'm doing without social media. For those of you who didn't see the original blog post, I gave up all social media for Lent. 

I've only had a few hiccups. 

One of the first things I noticed was the number of companies that only have an online presence on Facebook. I wanted to email a local company and was a little frustrated when I kept getting redirected to their Facebook page. A few days later I followed a link I didn't realize was heading towards Facebook and sighed angrily as I realized... even though I'd logged out in my browser before somehow Facebook had just logged me back in. I logged out and closed the window, amazed by how hard it was getting to avoid Facebook. I've also been sitting with Derek at night while he reads his feed but since I'm not "using" it I just let that go. Otherwise I'd be missing out on prime "sitting with my dude" time. 

The other big topic I didn't consider was hackers. Yesterday I received an email from Pinterest letting me know a new suspicious board had been added and they were removing it. So I logged in, reset my password, and logged out. Pinterest is another website that has an alarming number of redirects, especially for DIY projects. Googling "DIY easter egg projects" is just as likely to pull up blog post and crafting website links as it is bords from Pinterest. 

The plus side to this is awesomeness. Seriously.

I'm getting a ton more text and emails. And those emails are actually ones I'd like to read and respond too. Email has gone from passive (reading then deleting) to more engaging and I'm enjoying that. Talking to a friend via Facetime yesterday all the news was new. And it was nice to hear it from her and be able to ask follow up questions without sitting at my computer wondering if I'd miss read something and doing that awkward hover over the "like" button. (For instance, when something horrible has happened but they're hopeful there will be an ok outcome... do you like that or not!?)

The other side to increased quality of information is a decrease in the information that I can do nothing about. That probably sounds rather rude. But I have a compassionate heart. And sometimes when friends vent about what's going wrong in their lives I feel so helpless. I can carry them around in my heart all day if I'm not super careful. So I try to pray and let it go. But removing that hurt and frustration from my life has had some good side effects on my own quality of life.

I don't know where this leaves me at the end of 40 days. I don't think deleting my Facebook account will solve anything. In fact I've been reading about negative experience from not having a Facebook. Reasons vary from "employees thinking maybe you're a flake" to "new social contacts worrying you have something to hide". While I'm not too worried about what a future employer might think of me I do worry about making new friends in this small town. People are much more comfortable handing over a social media username then a phone number. I will definitely be looking into a way to downgrade my Facebook account and probably turn my attention back to Twitter and Instagram. 

No comments: