Sunday, 31 January 2016

A Month off Facebook

I decided in December that I was going to completely avoid Facebook in January. Why?
  • I was in a bad habit of checking it whenever I used my phone.
  • I felt like my limited spare time was being subtly sucked up.
  • I wanted some time to think about why and how I use Facebook, to use it better in future.
It is an odd habit to break, a sudden disconnection from lots of people who I care about.  Having deleted the app from my phone, it was a good reminder of my pledge, so I didn't lapse.  But knowing that all those updates and conversations were going on without me felt like all my friends were in a pub, and I had chosen to go to a different one.

And I did miss out on a few fun things :(

This reminded me of the need to stay connected, especially with people I care about who are a long way away.  But also the need to disconnect more from the people I care less about, using the allegedly very clever Facebook settings to unfollow the right people, or only get important updates from them.

I am committed to no more than a daily check of Facebook from now on, and no more than a daily update.  The app may stay off my phone, but as that is by far the easiest way to upload photos it may stay on, but this will be the biggest temptation to abscond.

In the meantime I have been spending a little more time reading and on Twitter, learning about interesting current affairs and staying connected to the world through the unexpected deaths of Bowie, Rickman and Wogan as they were all recognised, remembered and unequivocally praised for being talented and great human beings.

I snuck back on tonight to get through the piles of messages, notifications and the odd friend request (3).  And it makes me realise how bizarre it all is, projecting our thoughts out there in the ether for our friends, family and acquaintances to see if they so choose ... I hope that I can continue to keep my distance, whilst getting the best out of it.

And I highly recommend a month off, in case any of you fancy trying it!  I will be doing it again ...