About a year ago I gave up Facebook, and I haven’t looked back. I found Facebook to be more toxic than it was helpful; once a way to connect old friends and distant relatives quickly spiralled into a popularity contest.
I was always glued to my phone
I lost so many hours that would have been better used on other tasks I had piling up, or just doing things I enjoy like reading and writing. I’d spend most mornings rushing around before work because I’d wasted an hour in bed just refreshing the timeline. Now I don’t use Facebook any more I have so much more free time!
I was ignoring the people around me
I didn’t appreciate the people around me as much because I was constantly drawn into the online world, and I’ve since learned to put my phone down and really listen to people, I value face to face interaction a lot more. I know this isn’t possible all the time, and technology has allowed us to communicate more, but sometimes it works against us – why should I sit here messaging my mum when she’s literally in the next room?
I made unhealthy comparisons
University graduates, exotic holidays, engagements, weddings, babies, nights out, dream jobs, expensive cars, their first home, and that perfect fucking mirror selfie. I felt like I was missing out on life while everyone else was living it. I came across a quote a while ago, and it really stuck with me:
“Don’t compare their highlight reel to your behind-the-scenes”
People can create a perfect life on social media by choosing what they post, but you don’t know what happens beyond that. That couple just got engaged, but I bet they still argue. That girl just landed her dream job, but I bet she had to work ten shitty jobs before she got there. Don’t forget your own achievements while you’re drowning in everyone else’s. We’re all living our own lives, going down separate paths, at our own pace.
It’s my business
On the other hand, I don’t feel obligated to share every detail of my life on social media. The annual holiday photos, where I went at the weekend, what I wore. It’s fine if you like to share these things, but don’t feel as though you have to. Chances are, the people who care enough about you to want to know probably wouldn’t have found out through social media stalking anyway.
Since being off Facebook, I’ve found my confidence has improved, I have a lot more free time, and my head is clearer. Just because I quit Facebook doesn’t mean you have to – it has its merits, just not for me. Some people find comfort in scrolling and seeing what everyone is up to; but be aware of any toxic or obsessive behaviours that emerge from it. Your mental health is far more important than a few likes.