Three weeks ago I made a conscious decision to leave Facebook. It was actually very difficult. I feel that we currently live in a generation where we not only see social media as convenient, but it is the expected and preferred mode of communication for many millennials. I recently have found the whole thing very overwhelming, so I decided to leave.
1. I procrastinated too much.
A few weeks ago I told you about my workload of about 15 pages of assignments per week. Even though I should have been spent my computer time reading a research article, my eyes were glued to Facebook. I wrote and read no-nonsense posts and played little games. Since I have been off of Facebook, I feel less stressed about my school work. Because Facebook does not distract me, I finish my work on time. I even finish with EXTRA time to catch up on the latest episode of “The Good Wife.”
2. It made me sad.
There have been plenty of articles to suggest that Facebook evokes feelings of loneliness, envy and misery. Being a mid-20s millennial, I have found this to be very true for me. It seems as if all of my Facebook friends are starting cool new jobs, beginning to create a family and/or appear to have the most amazing weekends filled with Chicago night life. Their lives are chronicled through an array of pictures, status updates and check-ins; each one cooler than the last. Don’t get me wrong, I am very happy for the achievements of my real friends, but Facebook is a plethora of cool accomplishments. When you are unsure of yourself, between jobs, going through a break up, or just not in a good place in your life, you are forbidden from posting these things on Facebook. “Facebook is not your diary” is a common phrase that comes to mind. But what my generation seems to forget is that everyone feels sad sometimes…and that is OK. If social media is now the preferred form of communication, then my generation needs to allow people to be as authentic with their emotions as they can – even if it is over the internet. Personally, I am tired of having to explain myself and my achievements. Even though I do not go out every weekend or have a cool job, I like where my life is right now. There is no need to project that life on Facebook.
3. I got bored.
I have never been big on routine. Recently, I have found Facebook to be the same thing. Log on, go through newsfeed, like some posts, say happy birthdays, make a funny post, and come back in 15 minutes to see who commented on my post, repeat! Really, what kind of life is that? I’m a traveler, explorer, and I love to try new things. Facebook does not allow me to do that. Sure, I could chronicle my explorations on Facebook, but then I would be contributing to the same phenomenon that makes me sad.
I do think Facebook can be a great way to keep up with friends, but I was one of those people “addicted” to Facebook. I did not use it as a leisurely activity; I used it as my primary method of communication with friends. It feels nice to be unplugged and not constantly connected.
How do you feel about Facebook? Are you constantly plugged in?