Breaking up with Facebook

FacebookAlthough its most literal interpretation is about reducing physical clutter, to me minimalism is about letting go of anything that no longer serves me.

To be honest, it has been a while since I thought Facebook was enriching my life. If anything, a Facebook account is just something I feel like I should have. Everybody does, right?

At Alive this year, there was a lot of discussion about how to bridge the gap between knowing your truth and living your truth. Most of us know what we value and what makes us happy but we find our time and energy getting sucked into other things. Facebook seems to take more of my time and energy than I the value I get back in return.

Basically, the reasons that I have a Facebook account are all rooted in fear.

  • Fear of missing out on event invites.
  • Fear of losing touch with friends.
  • Fear that people who I don’t see often in real life will forget about me.
  • Fear that people will think I’m odd for not being on Facebook.
  • Fear that one day I might want to use apps like Tinder that rely on you having a Facebook account, and I won’t be able to.

But fear is no way to live.

Before I disabled my Facebook account in 2012 I had very similar fears, none of which turned out to be true. Okay, there were people that I didn’t speak to as much, but I communicated much more deeply with the friends who phoned or emailed me instead.

I was tempted back on to Facebook to help a long distance relationship (it didn’t help, but the relationship needed to end for reasons much more significant than Facebook) and have slightly resented it every since.

For a start, I have eight different apps on my phone for talking to my friends. Sometimes, I know I have a message to reply to I open several different programmes before I find the right one. Whatsapp? No. Facebook Messenger? No. Email? No. Oh yes, for some reason we were talking over twitter DMs (that’s okay, please send me more twitter DMs).

I’m becoming a little wary of my phone. It looks too busy, it keeps making a lot of different noises, it gives off a “oh my god don’t get in my way I’m so stressed out I can’t stop” vibe whenever I go anywhere near it.

So I’ll be deactivating my Facebook account to try and reduce some of the noise and make communicating with my friends more simple. My belief is that the people who matter will stay in touch anyway, the networks that are important will happen elsewhere, and I’ll be living a good life without it being documented in a newsfeed. But perhaps the biggest reason is the most basic: I want to live my life according to want I want rather than what I should. I’m deleting Facebook because I want to, and that’s the only reason I need.

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