• Rachel Loechelt

Why I Deleted Facebook and How It Completely Changed My Life After a Year.

It’s officially been a year since I have removed myself from Facebook. There were many reasons I decided to deactivate my Facebook and I’ll explain why shortly. This past year, I have grown so much mentally and found myself to be happier than I’ve ever been before. 

The first reason I called it quits was because Facebook wasn’t making me happy anymore. I found myself obsessing over people’s lives, hurting myself in the process, became increasingly annoyed with political rants, and realizing how toxic the website truly was. It was bringing more negativity into my life than it was bringing me joy.

Secondly, I became more aware of the reasons why I posted things and started feeling a bit silly. Of course, I was posting selfies to get likes. I was writing vague statuses in hopes I could reach out to that one person I should have just been direct with. I realized posting photos of my boyfriend and friends was my way of showing the world, “Hey, look! I’m not a lonely loser!” I know it sounds like I may have been reading into it a little too much, but that’s just the way I am. I want to live a more authentic and private life.

Lastly, I realized how much of my time was being sucked into other people’s lives. I found myself scrolling down my news feed for way too long and becoming overly involved in random people’s business. I came to realize, life isn’t all about showing people what I am doing or who’s in my circle. I didn’t want to upkeep a life resume anymore. Although social media is a resourceful way to keep in touch with distant family and friends, I decided that if I really wanted someone to know something about myself, I’d tell them.

This past year being off Facebook has done a lot of positive things for my mental state. I stopped engaging in pointless gossip about my old high school classmates. I spend more time scrolling through news articles and learning about politics and our economy. I am no longer glued to my phone and I am actually aware of my surroundings. I focus more on my personal relationships and share memories and photos with them directly. I am retaining more useful information and feel more involved with the people that actually matter in my life.

The other day while gathering my thoughts about this post, I came up with a really good analogy about social media. Consuming too much social media is like indulging in too much junk food. Eating junk food in this case is consuming throwaway content that starts cluttering your mind and wasting your time. If you had as many friends as I had (roughly 600 people I barely knew), you were bound to be scrolling through a lot of garbage posts. I mean, Facebook was starting to feel less personal and more like a junkyard littered with memes, “this is so me” videos, and photo albums filled of the same selfie with different filters. You really had to scroll for a long time just to find anything remotely interesting. With that being said, that “interesting” content was like a diamond in the rough. I’m sorry Elizabeth from 7th grade who I only knew for two years, I just don’t care anymore about your fourth baby on the way… *removes friend*

Although I don’t expect everyone to delete Facebook after reading this, I would highly recommend you go on a deleting spree or limit your time online. Seeing less about Cathy you only knew from middle school isn’t such a bad idea. Once you decided to stop hoarding meaningless friends, you may find the site to be more interesting. You’ll actually hear from the people you care about. You’ll probably see less junk and more inspiring and interesting posts made by your friends and family. Also, those “relatable” photos are only funny when you’re tagged in them, right? Do you really care about John from two jobs ago’s dinner photos last night? Is it really stimulating your brain when you see your cousin’s friend’s boyfriend’s mom sharing 28 photos of her grandchild? Or how about all those cat videos? Those are kinda funny though, i’ll admit.

I hope the takeaway from this post is that our lives were meant to be authentically lived and not crafted on social media. We should un-clutter our minds and make room for meaningful content. Instead of endlessly searching for something interesting on social media, we should consider switching our attention to something more stimulating and educational. Our smartphones are such a powerful tool. You are carrying a revolutionary device that can deliver a world of information to you right at your fingertips. Take advantage of the knowledge you can gain from it. With that being said, I encourage us all to take more time away from our phones and actually experience our life. That is the way life was always intended to be, after all.

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