Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Week One in Review

Seven days ago I began my Lenten journey. Forty days Facebook free. So what have I learned/observed so far?

Facebook is EVERYWHERE!!!! 

For the majority of the first three days every time I logged in to a new device I had to log out of Facebook on that device. I was connected everywhere I turned. Even on my husband and daughter's devices. It's been actually impossible to completely be rid of it since it is linked to my Pinterest and to this account as well. Even if I don't see Facebook; Facebook sees me. Case in point, a friend at church commented to me Sunday about a recipe I shared and the pantry challenge. It took me a moment to realize that he was seeing it via his Facebook notifications even though I hadn't been on Facebook in days. My mother sent her usual valentine greeting via my Facebook timeline, not having seen the post that I was giving up Facebook for Lent, and I had to call her to see what it was that she said. I'm still not sure what my cousin Alanna tagged me about on Day One of this adventure and every time I open the browser on my phone I have to be careful not to click "back" or Facebook automatically pops open. No wonder it's been such a time suck; short of deactivation it's darn near inescapable! 

The number one reason I use Facebook is to avoid boredom. 

The times I really struggle with not having access is when I'm bored. I could be bored because I'm waiting for something, or because I'm warm and comfy and actually doing something productive or creative takes more effort than I'd like to spend. When I'm bored I want my easy fix. I want my Facebook. Consequently I'm getting more done right now than I do in a typical day. I'm reading real books instead of memes and clickbait. I'm writing this blog every day, something that not three years of resolutions has been able to motivate. I'm creating small pockets of organization amidst my chaos that I have reason to hope might spread enough to merge into actually organized spaces by the end of this process. I'm creating period. I'm ahead of schedule on multiple projects and launching a couple of new things largely because I don't have my boredom pacifier to rely on. 

Pinterest is a lousy substitute for Facebook but an amazing resource on this journey.

I was really concerned that Pinterest would just become Facebook 2.0 for me. Thankfully that hasn't been the case. Instead it has been an excellent resource for recipes to try, organization methods to use and costume research to save me time and money at the thrift store. There is the ability to be social on Pinterest but it is secondary to the sort and store aspect of it and virtually no one I know uses it. My daughter, mother and I occasionally send one another pins we think would be useful or interesting but we don't linger there like I do on Facebook. 

Absence REALLY DOES make the heart grow fonder. 

The past few years I have happily been a virtual hermit. Yeah I'm an introvert and yeah people can be exhausting and blah, blah, blah. Facebook made that super convenient. I didn't HAVE TO engage people in real life if I didn't want to. I could still "keep in touch" via Facebook. Being off Facebook means I actually have to physically see people if I want to keep in touch. I can't remember when I've had more fun on a Saturday night at Dru's than I did this week. It was enjoyable to see people and to be seen. I think that I underestimate the effect that being connected to so many people via Facebook has on my ability to cope with dealing with real people in real life. Rather than protecting my introverted need for solitude I think it may actually be a bigger drain on my energy than interacting with people in real life. Something tells me there is a massive pruning of the "friends list" coming at the end of this. If you told me I had to spend a significant amount of time in a room with 1600+ people making small talk, I'd panic. Yet by and large that's all that goes on on Facebook. I'm thinking that may not work for me as well as I thought it was. In some ways it reminds me of the "Longest Party Ever Held" from the "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" and that's not good. 

Planning Anything is harder than it should be.

So many events are planned, publicized and organized via Facebook now that it is just crazy. I had to install my kid as my secretary in more than one "event page" in order to keep up with information important to projects and events already in the pipeline that will happen before Lent ends. I have a birthday coming up in less than a week and it's beyond tempting to take advantage of the Sunday loophole to create a Facebook event and invite people to join me on my birthday for conversation and drinks. No one actually plans parties anymore, we just post on Facebook that we're celebrating so and so at such and such place and time and select what friends to send it to and we call it done. I have three or four events that I would normally be posting about weekly in order to generate publicity and even though most of the folks that would see it will still likely see it posted by mutual friends, I feel like a slacker because I'm not hitting that send button. I'm re-launching my Etsy this weekend and I feel like a spammer posting about it here but its the only way I can advertize it right now. 

And now I see the clock and notice that I need to get offline and go pick up the kiddo from class and head to BHS to work more on Anne Frank. So until tomorrow, Peace. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm reading your blogs here and there! Thanks for sharing your experience.