I deactivated my Facebook account again, as soon as my daughter’s fashion design events were finished and I got the photo tags I wanted for posterity. 🙂 Increasingly, every time I go back there, I find that I don’t belong there anymore.
I still value catching up with what’s going in the lives of my family and friends, and I do appreciate the posts in my news feed from many inspirational and informative pages I’ve “Liked”, but I also don’t like the fact that it has a mind-numbing effect after a while of staying on there, and that hours go by so fast when I’m on Facebook.
For the past two years, I’ve been feeling quite adrift in my life, despite the outer trappings of awards and good friends and sponsored travels to speaking engagements nationally and internationally, and being in a good place now with my treasures after 10 years of single parenting.
Somehow, it felt like I’ve lost my taste for life in the sense that I don’t feel attached to a lot of things that most people would hang on to and even die for anymore. “No more drama” became my mantra and I just lived each day as it came. That was actually good.
What bothered me, though, was that I also seemed to lose my touch for the good writing I’ve become known for. Even writing a simple business letter or responding to a business email became an overwhelming task I’d rather put off than attend to immediately.
It wasn’t until I deactivated from Facebook for two and a half months (April 13 – June 4, 2013) that I realized the ennui I have been experiencing was due, in large part, to information and social media overload!
For those precious, quiet two and a half months this year, I mostly spent even more time alone, just meditating, walking, writing on my journal, cleaning the house, learning how to cook, studying subjects of interest on my own, and even enjoying working even more focusedly again (only when I’m at work; because I’ve also developed the habit of not bringing work home anymore).
I also got back to reading for pleasure again, and soon enough, the writing started flowing again, with more depth and richness, even if they’re only in my journals. I also found my self more attentive and present to the people in my real-time real life whenever I was engaged in conversations with them, because I don’t know what’s going on in their lives, being deactivated from Facebook and all.
I only had to reactivate last June 4 because I had to attend a service-learning conference in Hongkong, and it was easier (and less expensive) for my treasures to contact me via Facebook. So I found my self back in Facebook again, but after a while, the “newness” of being more socially engaged began to wear off and even burden me, so I would deactivate again for weeks, to reactivate only to check on my treasures and the groups I belong to… and when I’m feeling really lonesome for human company.
But, yes, increasingly, every time I go back there, I find my self not really belonging there anymore. All the posts that rant and blame and complain about the world particularly get to me, so I’ve even acquired the habit of instantly unfriending people who do these things in my news feed.
As I grow in my inner life and enjoy all the peace and joy and richness here, Facebook loses more and more of its attraction for me.
Still, at times, it can get pretty lonesome too, but hey, I remind my self, I lived a rich solitary life before the Internet and Facebook; I can consciously, mindfully reclaim that life again now,
P.S. Wow, this feels good, my first original blog post (not pressed, not reblogged) after a long time, long after those prolific 2004-2008 blogging years (pls. see My Blog Roll)! 🙂 ❤
Hmmm… curiously, it was in the middle of 2008 when I started Facebooking.