Why I’m Off Facebook
Friday night I pulled the plug on Facebook. Originally, my thought was to fast one month from Facebook and then return. Now, I am not so sure. I’m not sure I can ever avoid the pitfalls. Here they are:
1. I was addicted. “Hello, my name is Robin Steele, and I’m addicted to Facebook.” I was addicted to the “buzz” of getting a good comment, a ‘like’, or simply a lot of comments on a status update. There is a let down when you don’t get a comment or you see a negative comment. I was tired of letting these things yang me around. I got the to point where I checked Facebook multiple times throughout the hour. If ever there was a dull moment, someone stopped talking, I was in an elevator, I was at a stop light, …I would pull out my ‘smart’ phone and check Facebook. What had people said about what I had said?
2. Time Wasted. Because of reason #1, I was constantly spending time on Facebook and that took me away from other more important issues. I didn’t really have a problem looking at others’ information, because my problem was tied up in my own self-worth. It is impossible for me to have meaningful study period or creative sessions if I am constantly checking Facebook.
3. The networking/communication value of Facebook is way overrated. The internet is such a lazy way to pastor a church. You think you can sit there at a desk and pastor people through Facebook and email. You can’t. People still need one-on-ones and coffee time! I had almost 1200 ‘friends’ on Facebook. Really? The internet shields people from responsibility and accountability and they are able to respond in ways that they would never do in person or on the phone. People are meaner online in a given situation than they would be in person. They are less real. There is no accountibility and people can hide behind technology. A great example of this is ‘events’. If you have an ‘event’ on Facebook, you might have half the people (that say ‘attending’) actually show up. In traditional invitations, you will get at least 75% of your RSVPers to show up. I knew most of this going into to Facebook. Email and texting had been a good precursor. However, I have made a decision to INVEST in my time in more meaningful conversations in person and on the phone. Facebook does provide a connection with people that you haven’t seen in years, and if I ever get back on Facebook, that will be the only reason. I was connected to many pastors all over the world and I am missing that connection. Facebook is also an incredible way to get a crisis or good news out extremely fast. However, for me, meaningful messages like that were like a needle in a haystack. Very few and far in between.
I am not predicting that Facebook is going to fail or it is a fad or phase. Nor, do I think that you will go to hell if you use it. 🙂 However, I’m tired of it.
What has happened since I got off? Check it out!