Is life without Facebook survivable?

facebook fastI’m always looking for ways to lure serenity into my life. Stress creeps up, and if I don’t make a concerted effort to keep things relatively placid, the calendar fills, bedtimes get later, I get crankier…you probably get the idea. Many of us are either battling chaos or drowning in it.

I saw this Zenhabits gem, Walled-in: Life without Facebook. If you’re not familiar with Zenhabits, the man behind the zen is Leo Babuto and, considering his million-plus readers, I figure he knows his business. In his post, he extols the benefits of going Facebook free (gulp):

“My day is quieter now. I focus on more introspective stuff. I still share on Twitter and Google+, but only occasionally and I don’t check them more than once daily. Instead, I write. I read longer-form journalism, or novels. I walk, and exercise. I play with my kids, and spend time with my wife. I learn things.”

Ahem.  This is not even remotely close to what my day looks like.

What exactly do I gain from my Facebook account? I know when Target has a sale on bath linens. I know when the kid who sat behind me in homeroom (and poked my head with his eraser) gets drunk and loses his online filter. I see a gazillion less-than-profound memes. I get a bit of useful information from my account but, if I’m being honest, most of it’s just mind clutter.

I used to believe I needed Facebook. I’m a homemaker with small children; Facebook was my lifeline to the grown-up world. Without it, I would surely diminish and begin to babble and scrawl Crayola murals on my walls.

I began to wonder about others who live Facebook-free. My own husband has no Face. He refuses to join the masses and somehow he manages to stay current on things that matter. In truth, he thinks I’m slightly mad for spending time scrolling through so much…minutia.

He’s right. While I don’t spend huge amounts of time Facebook-ing, I do let it interrupt my day, like when I should be folding laundry. Or writing. And really, I have a feeling it interferes more than I want to believe it does. Babuto says as much – then comes right out and challenges his readers to give it up and embrace solitude.

“…make your own way. The path you walk on your own, it’s a path worth giving your soul for. Your feet on the barely-tread ground, the fresh air of wilderness around you, and your own voice for company. It’s worth everything you’ve got.”

Challenge accepted.

I’m going on a three-week Facebook fast. I am no zenmaster and, as such, am not brave enough to shut down my account. Not yet. Still, taking a long, hard look at this got me dreaming about all the other, more important things I could be doing. Coloring with the kids. Writing. Reading. Learning. Daydreaming. Silence-savoring.

How about you? Would you, could you go without Facebook (or your social medium of choice)? Tell you what. I’ll go first. If I wind up crouched in a corner and laughing maniacally, we will have learned we must wean ourselves from Facebook gradually.

Image courtesy of jannoon028 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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21 thoughts on “Is life without Facebook survivable?

  1. Experienced Tutors March 5, 2013 at 9:42 am Reply

    Second post in two days I’ve read about ditching Facebook. She has actually done it and I clicked Follow`, telling her that anyone who does that deserves to be followed.

    A confession. I have an account. I have a business page and a personal one. I publish my WordPress posts on them – as I do with LinkedIn, Tumblr, and two or three other such sites. They link from my WordPress account and I never even check them. Just a networking business aid that I don’t need to spend time on.

    I found Facebook to be full of banal trivia about people’s lives – I hate work, I made cupcakes on Sunday, going clubbing on Friday, etc. etc. etc. Give me a break!

    Get out of there – you won’t regret it.

    • Being June March 5, 2013 at 8:19 pm Reply

      Well, I’ve made it about eight hours and I’m doing OK. Of course, now that I’m thinking about it I’m developing a bit of a twitch. You’re absolutely right, though, it’s really not a good use of my time. It’s a bunch of random events from a bunch of people I don’t know well – if at all. I’m finding that I MUCH prefer the blogging world. And for business, it makes total sense that you’d have a larger social media presence. I’m not there, and so I have no excuse lol!

  2. Jamie @ Thrifty Veggie Mama March 5, 2013 at 9:56 am Reply

    I have considered doing this so many times! I always so feel like I’ll miss something when actually I am probably missing more important things wasting time on FB.

    • Being June March 5, 2013 at 8:22 pm Reply

      I definitely feel like I’m missing something! But I’m trying to remember that I can probably count on one hand (out of five years on Facebook!) the number of times I’ve found something truly newsworthy. Let me know if you decide to do it!

  3. Christopher P. Thames March 5, 2013 at 10:31 am Reply
    • Being June March 5, 2013 at 8:23 pm Reply

      Thanks for the reblog, and thanks for stopping by!

  4. CultFit March 5, 2013 at 11:16 am Reply

    Not only is life survivable without Facetube or whatever its called, life is better. Life instantly becomes more fulfilling, building real and meaningful relationships. I wish the very best today, be inspired and please take care. 🙂

    • Being June March 5, 2013 at 8:24 pm Reply

      Facetube – love it! I’m only on day one, but my time was already better spent. Thanks for stopping by, and for the kind words 🙂

  5. ashleylecompte March 5, 2013 at 3:42 pm Reply

    I have considered doing this AND writing about it on my blog to encourage other’s to do the same. I feel like somehow, social media eats away at my personal time. I like having it to share pictures with family members…but I also appreciate being “old school” and actually, ya know, CALLING someone on their birthday instead of posting it to their wall.

    Thanks for the encouragement. I feel like God is clunking me over the head with those more and more.

    • Being June March 5, 2013 at 8:27 pm Reply

      Oh, wow, you call people on their birthdays? You rock. Honestly, I just viewed it as having become a part of my life, never considered dropping it. But when it dawned on me what I could be missing…I figure I can handle three weeks Facebook-free. I’m willing to bet God will want more than that lol! Thanks for visiting.

      • ashleylecompte March 5, 2013 at 8:42 pm

        HAH. No, I don’t call them. Which was kind of why I felt a need to disconnect for a little while. I totally understand where you are coming from, too! I started out using Facebook as a means to stay in touch, but then for me it turned into a distraction. I like the ways that you put it though. Take care!

  6. MustardSeedBudget.wordpress.com March 6, 2013 at 1:05 pm Reply

    kudos! i went 4 months without FB… it is possible!

  7. mydailyminefield March 6, 2013 at 6:19 pm Reply

    I sure hope it is. I almost fell out of my seat yesterday when FB offered me the option to “promote a post.” It was about a cause I support so I thought sure. Then they took me to a screen where I could pay $7 to do so!!! I’ve backed way off of using FB and it’s not really that bad. In fact, it’s kind of nice 🙂

    • Being June March 7, 2013 at 1:22 pm Reply

      Ugh. I thought it was bad when they just wanted to collect your info and share everything about you. Wonder what they’ll think up next? I have to say, so far I’m loving my Face-less experiment lol!

  8. joeyfullystated March 8, 2013 at 11:22 am Reply

    Oh, I could never do it. Facebook is my biggest guilty pleasure. I love to take my breaks with the Facebook. There’s just nothing else like it in terms of keeping up with all of my favorite people. You’ve got my admiration!

    • Being June March 8, 2013 at 11:57 am Reply

      Thanks – so far so good with the “fast”! I can’t say that I miss it…yet.

  9. notebooksandteacups March 22, 2013 at 1:58 am Reply

    I am happily Facebook-free, and always have been. When I hear my middle-aged friends talking about the drama that they deal with on Facebook, I’m really glad that I ignored the siren-call (and social pressure) to join.

  10. […] I stopped surfing Facebook each time I had a brain-lull (which evidently happens more often than I thought), I started […]

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