Updated: Jul 24, 2018
So you already know I can't social. I really wasn't expecting to follow that post up so soon with more news about I can't social even harder than before. But alas, when my mother text me this morning asking about deactivating facebook... my dear sweet mother who literally doesn't have a controversial bone in her body... my ears perked right up (any dog owners out there??) Her text went something like "when you deactivate facebook does it delete your profile and all your posts?"
So of course I responded with "absolutely" (being a veteran of deactivating facebook I do feel sort of authoritative on the subject). I also added a small caveat about having to find a new way to authenticate into authorized apps, but I digress...
So after a brief conversation with my mom about her motivation behind her request (in a nutshell: drama) it really got me thinking... why am I even on facebook if I don't use it? Like... literally... WHY. AM. I. EVEN. HERE.
After having started reading Courtney Carver's book Soulful Simplicify, and after catching The Minimalists' latest post about Derek Sivers I have been dually reminded me that "If you’re not saying “HELL YEAH!” about something, say “no”. " Armed with my minimalist mantra for the day, I made an on-the-spot decision to join my mother (who also happens to be my best friend besides my husband) in walking away from facebook. What am I really losing out on? Sure, there are the meaningful updates from friends and family and the pictures of my nieces and nephews getting big too fast (stop it, already, guys), but for the most part there is media overload and way too much drama. And posts that make me wonder if I can actually continue knowing some individuals in real life.
So what do I have to gain by deactivating? The loss of the (self-imposed) pressure I have to log in periodically and try to catch up with people's lives. The absence of the guilt I feel when I let messages linger too long without checking/responding. The loss of the shame I feel when I scroll my news feed and wonder if people forgot we are not multiple races... we are one race...the human race. I gain my peace of mind again. I gain real relationships where you have to send an email or make a phone call or schedule a coffee date to catch up with someone. I gain my independence as a consumer in having one less forum to push ads down my throat. And I gain a little bit more of my time back.
Long story short: when social media dredges up more feelings of negativity than happiness, it may be time to let it go and walk away. For now, my other social media platforms remain intact (albeit with very little usage), and my facebook account has been deactivated. I have deleted facebook and messenger both from my phone (and what the heck... I went ahead and deleted snapchat too... I have literally never snapped, anyway... and according to Kyle Jenner, snapchat is sad, so like why would I ever wanna snap, anyway??) This deactivation will mark my 4th or 5th time deactivating... and as I told my mom and my husband today, I will probably never look back. In fact, I feel very liberated by walking away.
Disclaimer: I did download my entire facebook data history before deactivating. As of right now, you can visit the ▼ icon at the top/right of any page and go to Settings/General/Download a copy of my data (at the bottom) and follow the instructions to download all your pictures, etc. A cursory review of my download .zip file leads me to believe it is a complete compilation of my facebook data dating all the way back to the first time I ever logged in. None of this is useful to me except the photos, which I will upload into a dropbox file and organize everything when I have time.