This Lent will go down in the history books for me. I have to admit that, at the beginning, giving up Facebook was harder than I thought. It was second nature to check it on my phone or to open up a 'Facebook' window on my computer, so much so that I did it quite a few times only to shut it down quickly once I realized what I'd done. Then it started messing with my head a bit, like I was doing something wrong. Like I was purposefully ignoring the people in my life by not being on Facebook.
About two weeks in, when the Facebook Reflex (trademark?) had been settled, I started to feel the benefits of being offline. I wasn't getting worked up over status updates, and I wasn't spending time looking at so-and-so's pictures from their vacation to wherever. I wasn't thinking snarky thoughts about the people I was connected with. I wasn't passing judgement based on an opposing political view or a self-righteous post.
And then there were the emails. I had misjudged just how much I used Facebook for email, and when it came to my attention that there were several messages of importance that I was ignoring, I made the conscious choice to log in. All told, there were three 'cheats' this Lent, two of which involving a road to trip to New Jersey this summer, which I'm hopeful Jesus will forgive me for.
And then there was Instagram which, for all intents and purposes, took the place of Facebook on my break. Here are a few gems:
It wasn't lost on me that I'd simply replaced Facebook with other form of social media. It also wasn't lost on me that my time formerly spent on Facebook was being spent reading other news, not reflecting on the Saints or praying for the needy. I did do other things, things that I'm hoping will make me a better person and stuff, but as far as giving up Facebook factors into that... I'm dubious.
Will I give up Facebook again next year? Probably not. But I'm glad I tried-- a woman in her thirties tries. And even if she doesn't get the results she was hoping for, she applauds the effort.