Friday, 29 April 2011

Goodbye Facebook.....

I  love Facebook! I love how it connects me with others. I love how it keeps me up to date with those who live far from me. There is a lot of great things about Facebook. I love how my Princess Warrior Lessons Facebook page connects me with those who I have met in Blog Land.

But there is a dark side to using Facebook that I don't like. I hate who I become. I hate how it sucks me in, like a vortex and before I know it, I have wasted an hour that could have been used more productively. I hate how it makes me a lazy friend. Instead of calling someone, sending a text message, sending a personal email or letter, I write in the comments of a status or 'like' their status. I hate how it has control over me.

I hate how Facebook can upset me when friends who haven't been in my life for 10 years, think they have a voice in my life now they are my Facebook friend and debate me on my status - hiding behind their computer screens. But in reality, they are not in my 'real' world and would never speak to me like that if they were in the same room as me. I hate that I feel guilty if I think about 'unfriend'ing a Facebook friend. I hate it when I think before I put a Facebook status up in case I might offend someone in my friend's list.

I hate who I become in the world of FAKEbook. The reality is not a real world, but can certainly feel like one. I have spent time wondering why a friend has 'unfriend'ed me. I spend time pondering about a comment that was left that annoyed me. I hate how I spend a lot of time and energy thinking about Facebook. I hate how I feel like I need Facebook in my life or I will miss out on so much.

Much like coffee had control over me, and I had to quit the java - it is time to break up with Facebook....or at least have a separation for a time. I have decided to deactivate my Facebook account for the entire month of May. I am actually going to take the time to decide whether or not I will activate my Facebook account ever again. (A trusted friend has admin rights to my Princess Warrior Lessons page during May.) Sure I will miss the connections of many beautiful women whom I have had the privilege of meeting on Facebook. But I have to weigh up the costs.

What costs?
The cost of not being completely there for my Boy Warriors. Often time I can be present, but not really in the moment.
The cost of not enjoying the season I am in with the boys, and having them grow up and me left with regrets that I worried more about Facebook, than grabbing their chubby faces and really listening to them.
The cost of producing quality writing on my blog. I find myself no longer writing from the heart, but writing for an audience. This is why there has been weeks of writers block and no posts.
The cost on the closeness in my relationship with my Father. I find myself reading more on the Facebook website than I do His Word. I have pulled away from my First Love, worrying more about other people's opinions that I do His.
The cost of my husband's frustration in trying to understand why I care so much about Facebook. (He doesn't have a Facebook account.)

I have been questioning whether or not it is a good thing to actually know hour by hour, day by day what people are doing or thinking. Many times I have had a conversation with a friend and have started to tell them what I have been up to, and they say, "Oh I know, I saw that on Facebook." Do we give too much of ourselves to everyone on Faceboook? Being an extrovert I love the attention my Facebook status may get. I check to see if I have received comments of 'like's. But it's not healthy. If I get my self worth by the amount of attention I get, then something is wrong.

I want to go back to a simpler time where I gazed at my husband lovingly thinking of ways I can show him how much I love him. I want to go back to a time when spending quality time with my boys was something I treasured. I want to go back to a time where I connected with others in Blog Land. I want to go back to a time where I took time to call a friend, visit or write an email or letter when I was thinking of them.I want to go back to a time when I walked with Him hour by hour, day by day. I want to go back to a time where I shared what was on my heart on my blog, without the pressure of an audience, but trusting that He would use my gift of writing to bring others closer to Him.

The truth is, I am excited about the dreams I have in my heart for the future. But they are for the future, not now. I have been trying to make those dreams come true myself in my own strength, that belong to a future season. In this season, all He has asked me to do is to share my heart on my blog, love my husband, love and raise my boys through home education and to be part of the vision in my church family. I need to learn to live and be content the season I am in - not long for a future season. This is my time of healing of my mind, soul and body. This is my time of training and preparation for future seasons.

I am stepping back from the information overload that is Facebook and seeing how it fits. I may or may not be back on Facebook. I am looking forward to refocusing and reconnecting with things and people that really matter. I am looking forward to breaking free from the control Facebook seems to have over me. Most of all I am looking forward to reconnecting and focusing on Him. It's time for me to wake up and get back to what really matters......

Still taking lessons from the King,

PS - I will still be on twitter

The Rest of the story:
Unplugging from Social Media (18 May, 2011)
Oh boys....Mummy's home (20 May, 2011)


  1. Oh my...this is me too. Thank you SFAM. I'm missing out on my girl, my God, my friends and ME because of seeing what others are doing. xoxo

  2. Hi Jo,
    I love that you wrote this post.
    It's like you read my heart.
    I haven't been on it for 2 months now.
    It was a friendship was lost and i really believe that Facebook was something I had to let go of to see myself become whole again. It was a major part of my depression.
    I love this post! Thank you so much, it's confirmation I'm doing the right thing!
    x Stacey

  3. Great post Jo. "Fakebook" - it's so true. (A lot of the reasons you've given, are also why I don't tweet.) Enjoy the break and many blessings for choosing to seek what's most important.x

  4. Smart girl! Facebook drives me absolutely insane. I'm hardly ever on it. Though, I do have a separate one for my blog- that keeps me from losing my mind.

  5. Wow. Your post is just incredible. It has stopped me in my tracks tonight. I am spending a week at my dad's house with my son on an extended vacation so I have limited computer time ... it was late tonight and I was just about to shut of the PC when I thought "Oh, I forgot to check Facebook" and immediately there was a check on my heart. Like, how long will it be now before I pull away from the computer and get some sleep. Then I saw your GOODBYE post. Just amazing. I really need time to digest the things you've said. Because there was some real conviction going on in my heart about my own Facebook use. I am inspired by your courage and your faithful pursuit of what is HIS best for you, for your family. Thanks for a good wake up call. P.S. I will REALLY miss you on FB!

  6. Great post, Jo. I applaud your moves to put the important things in your life first. No matter what you face, you will succeed as you are willing to make the hard choices. Love you heaps. Will miss you but then I'll just have to call you more often and that can't be a bad thing. ;)

  7. I hang on because I talk to my mom on there. It is the only relationship we have ever had. It is not my biggest time waster, I left for a month last year, and regrouped.

  8. Great and heartfelt post!

    I think you hit it on the dot with this part,"I hate how Facebook can upset me when friends who haven't been in my life for 10 years, think they have a voice in my life now they are my Facebook friend and debate me on my status - hiding behind their computer screens. But in reality, they are not in my 'real' world and would never speak to me like that if they were in the same room as me. I hate that I feel guilty if I think about 'unfriend'ing a Facebook friend. I hate it when I think before I put a Facebook status up in case I might offend someone in my friend's list.

    I hate who I become in the world of FAKEbook. The reality is not a real world, but can certainly feel like one. I have spent time wondering why a friend has 'unfriend'ed me. I spend time pondering about a comment that was left that annoyed me. I hate how I spend a lot of time and energy thinking about Facebook. I hate how I feel like I need Facebook in my life or I will miss out on so much.

    There seems to be more presence of bickering and not only that, but just an uncomfortable assumption of "instantly" knowing a person, just because they are friends on FB and its hard not to wonder too...

    Has Facebook made friendships and relationships, quick and disposable versus the time it actually takes to grow and nurture a relationship that is based on confidence and development that isn't on "being added as a friend just because FB" says so.

    FB does have its blessings, due to being an outlet for those who otherwise have difficult meeting like minded individuals in real life, or even the means, but it seems too...that it can quickly be used as a way to grow cliques and to ostracize and less to encourage and engage in common courtesy that people would normally engage in real life.

  9. Thank you for this. I am considering my relationship with FB right now and this has been an encouragement to me.
    Even today, I am embarrassed to admit, I went with my daughter to another town to pick up her wedding gown from the shop where it was being altered for her wedding this June. On the way, I realized that I forgot my phone. (She had hers had we needed one for an emergency)I seriously felt uncomfortable because I was disconnected from someone who may need to send me a message via FB. (that's where we all communicate now).
    Then, when we got to the Bridal shop, I kept feeling like I needed to update my status so that everyone would know we were doing something "cool".
    Thinking about it later as we headed home on the freeway, I realized...this is INSANE. This is my only daughter's wedding. My firstborn. And I'm preoccupied with FACEBOOK. Sad.
    Sorry for the long comment...I don't even know you. I guess the Holy Spirit just took me to your sight for this moment.

  10. Couldn't agree with you more! I recently had issues with the birthdays. If you go on a lot at a time when it's distant friend's birthdays and comment on their wall for all to see then youdon't go on for ages and either miss a closer friend's birthday or relative because your just not on there and then one day I chilled out and stopped worrying what it looked like. If the birthdays are not on my calendar then FB birthdays are extra optionals.

  11. I think we all have to reexamine our activities and motives from time to time and simply follow God's leading.

  12. GO GIRL! I did this for lent and I don't even really miss FB. It only took about two days of withdrawl to realize how much of my real life I had withdrawn from. I did keep my account, but I don't check it but briefly now every once in a while before bed, after family time. I kept it because I have a few friends where this is the only way I can keep up with them. I will say, however, that the decrease in voices in my head ... dramatic. I had to check out of twitter, too. I could read blog links and article links there all day. Living intentionally this year. Intentionally removing distractions. Not perfect, but so much better by His grace!

  13. I've been calling it FAKEBOOK for a while now on my blog and was hoping I didn't offend anyone!
    I only spend little time there for some of the same reasons.
    I don't find it that appealing and while I prefer blog land, some of the traits of blog land are similar to FB, I just need to be aware of that and not fall into those same pitfalls:)

  14. i can relate whatyou are saying... i too have realized how much time i spend walking into the computer room to see who and what has posted since i was in there before.. i dont know that I will deactivate my account..but i will "choose" to not go on fb as much..
    thanks for the honest truth.. you know we all think it..but a lot of us wont act on our thoughts.. great post.. god bless

  15. As with anything in this life, when we block our view of God with something else, we create a vast hole within us. You are wise to realize this and do something about it! Kudos to you for listening to God's gentle nudging!

    Living for Him, Joan

  16. Just wanted to let you know that even though you aren't visiting FB, that you are not forgotten. God had me praying for you last night. Blessings upon you :)

    Nicole W :)

  17. I did this last year and i loved it!
    though a small handful of special friends were lost to me, and that enticed me back. then I was compelled to add personA which lead to b and so on. You are a wise woman, I am right now workingout the balance between facebook, friendships that are difficult to maintain with out it ( then again what is wrong with an email right!) and the amount of time i stare numbly at stuff that matters not. I find myself using the tele so i can serve FB it is unhealthy I know it.. oh to find balance, thank you for wise words to dwell on.. Umm BTW can i book in a playdate soon, I miss you!

  18. I'm missing your cheery voice on Facebook, Jo. Twitter's so much less personal, somehow...

  19. Good for you, I think you have your priority straight:)

  20. Facebook definitely has a shadow side, especially the way it can consume my time or absorb my thoughts.

    I always appreciate your honesty and vulnerability here on your blog. You are one of my favorite writers to follow.

    Blessings to you.

  21. after I received a comment from you on my old fb post from over a year ago, it was a series of "hints" or promptings i was getting to keep my obedience and get rid of my account. So I finally deleted it all. Not just deactivated it. Now there's nothing to go back to and i feel so free!!!
    FB has had a hold over me for 2 and a half years for the reasons you stated here in your post and for the ones i wrote about. It is a great tool for some people, but for me, I can't handle it. So it's gone.

    thanks goodness I never understood twitter!

  22. Jo, I wanna thank you for this post. This has been a battle i have struggled with for months and many are the days i have longed to end my stay at FB. I have stayed for right reasons and many times for wrong reasons. Sometimes i have even regretted having a fan page. Don't get me wrong I love every fan that is on my page. I really do. They are the reason I keep posting and sending encouraging thoughts, but there are days when that pressure gets to me. There are days when I wonder who will post something encouraging to me, because I need it. I find myself lots and disgusted at the place I have found myself at the power i have let FB have over my life. Just recently i started trimming my friend list, and I stopped for what reason I dont know.
    Thank you for presenting this so openly and this has given me power over my life. I am now re-evaluating my reason for being on FB. I love the fans, all of them, I hope that God can let me know what next.

  23. I thoroughly agree with your assessment and have been experiencing the same things myself. I will pray that God will give us both balance.

  24. Wow! My best friend and I were just chatting on the phone about this very thing, and we have never even been a member of Facebook! We have seen how it has really been a bad thing for a few people in our lives. Thank you so much for speaking on this and being honest! I am going to share this! Renee in TN

  25. I found this post via Paula's stuff and I love it, it's so challenging and true. Thanks :-)

  26. I think it's cutely ironic that you have so many Facebook "likes" to this post! Haha... we are all so silly at times. I hear you, sister! I deleted my FB, only to re-boot it a week later. It's hard. I feel that FB really has crept into pop-culture and has incredible control. If you are a business and you are not on Facebook, you are missing something that 'every one else' is doing. Same with Twitter. It's really quite scary, when you think of it and I've often wanted to delete Facebook again. For now, I have pledged to minimize what I post to encouraging and easy-going things that might act as a testimony to God's love in my life. I've stopped posting my Blog posts, etc. as it just became open debates, as you said. And that is so tiring. I've also limited myself to 10 minutes a day at the maximum. I do find it is a good way to stay connected to those people you truly care about but just don't have the TIME to call or email. Esp. my sister who goes away to school in the Fall and friends who are busy with babies, etc. Sure, "liking" some one's status surely isn't as personal as a call, but sometimes, a little encouragement helps us Moms get through the day. Even if it is only a few 'likes', eh? But I hear what you're saying with wrapping ourselves up in the need to get those 'likes'. That's a different story. Excellent insight, thanks for the post... Lots will benefit! xo

  27. Hi Jo. Checked your blog out and like it. So I'll be following. Brave girl to give up facebook. Don't have and don't want it for all the reason you listed including a few others. Look forward to reading more of your posts. God bless. Tracy

  28. Hope you're sticking to your resolve, Jo. I think every woman I know with a computer has had issues at some time over being swallowed up by the social networking monster. (myself included).

    May God give you eyes to see His blessings in and around you, and His strength to manage your daily chores, and His grace to resist the call of the computer. xx

  29. Hey Jo
    This is Mikey, Sunah's son
    Mum showed me this recently
    and it was really good and makes sense
    about Facebook.
    This is exactly what mum told me about facebook
    but you made everything much more clearer.

  30. Hi Jo,
    A well written piece.
    I could very well relate to it,
    Though i opened an account at fb to promote my writings, its really eating away my precious time and priority time for my Lord, and family,
    We need to have a control over it otherwise things will go beyond limit and many things will go behind schedule.
    Thanks for the great alert to your readers as well your followers at fb etc, hey what about twitter and other social web sites LOL
    Keep up the good work
    I joined in

  31. I too have wasted so much time on Facebook. I deactivated my account and my husband and I have a joint one for keeping up with family in England... good post! Blessings, Glenys


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Jo Princess Warrior xo