Why did I decide to stay one month without Facebook?
I decided to stay one month witouth Facebook because, well,I felt a little bit intoxicated.
Picking up my phone and opening Facebook has become such an automatism that I did not even think about it anymore. Probably a little bit too frequently.
As reported in this article from The Guardian, many people are losing interests in Facebook, especially the youngest. These guys say they are happier without Facebook, because they don’t feel like a failure anymore if their lives doesn’t fit in the frame they want to share. I’m not at that level, since I don’t care a lot of the “likes” I earn, but actually I started to be aware of the time spent and probably lost. I tried to calculate indeed how much time I spent on Facebook everyday and I realised it was simply too much. At least, too much compared to the benefits I had.
You could think it’s an experiment only half succeeded. I stayed one month without Facebook, not without all my accounts. Actually Facebook is what I really use for my “social” life. I mainly use Twitter to follow my interests and for information. Instagram is apparently still a niche social for my acquaintance.
Facebook is still the place where most of the people I know post about their personal life.
Here’s what I learned in one month without Facebook.
It was really easy to quit.
Actually, after a few times I had to decide not to click on the Facebook app, I just stopped to do it. Quite naturally. Good news, I’m not addicted.
I did not lose so much.
THe time might have been too short, but when I connected again after 1 month without Facebbok all looked more or less the same. People post always the same things. Same children, same holidays, same cats. Well, not exactly the same picture but still the same life.
I don’t remember birthdays.
I discovered in one month without Facebook that one of the best Facebook’s services is the notification of birthdays In the past I used to remember most of my family and friends birthdays. Now it’s like Facebook is an external hardware and these dates got out of my brain. Is it a good thing? I don’t know I just report one result of this test.
I fine tuned my interests
I follow many blogs and sometimes I read a post just because appears on my feed. Even if it’s rubbish. In one month without Facebook I understood what was really interesting to me. Great save of time.
When you don’t connect Facebook gets crazy and wants you back.
I had plenty of notifications in my e-mail, more than usual I think. And that number of unread notifications growing on the F logo on my telephone screen was so teasing… But remember, Mark doesn’t want you back, what he wants is your data.
People posts are predictable.
People normally posts articles or comments about the mainstream stories in a country: politics, latest news, sports, films. Well, I can say that going back to check what people posted I found exactly what I expected. Who posts pictures posted mainly pictures, who posts comments mainly comments, who posts corny sentences posted corny sentences. Nothing I could do without for one month.
If you don’t take that picture with the aim to share it, probably you won’t take it at all.
Looking at things without the push to take the best picture to share was just so relaxing. Yes, I believe we are missing something of true life through that screen. But I’m not sure this trend is going to change, since we are all a little bit obsessed by smartphones. (Especially in Italy).
So you might think why after one month without Facebook I got back.
Well, even if our acquaintance life is so boring, we’re apparently oddly interested in it. Gossiping is so fun! And I am a human, after all.
I am not a great sharer on Facebook, mainly science education articles and pictures of my travels. But I like to do it.(Boring myself, I know).
And what was the final result of my test? After being one month without Facebook, I spend now much less time on it. Just a quick look a couple of times a day, something more if I land on something interesting to read.
But at the end on the day, probably you miss more than you earn being completely out of Facebook. I don’t want to loose contacts with far-away friends and with people I share interests with. For me it’s a kind of memorandum of thing I want to do, restaurants I want to go, places I want to visit. So I arrived at the very predictable conclusion that the only option for us today is to find the best balance between real and virtual life.
Image from The unbrakeable Kimmy Schmidt.