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Monday, February 15, 2016

The Pros and Cons of Giving Up Facebook During the Week

       As a Catholic, I was faced with doing something fruitful during the season of Lent. Some of us do charitable things, others give up something, and there are those who devote more time to spiritual nourishment. Maybe some do all of these, but I chose to give up Facebook Monday through Saturday.
     I became so accustomed to logging on to social media right before breakfast that I didn’t know what to do with that time slot. So, instead, I read, prayed, or caught up on some critiquing in my writer’s group. What do you know? There is time to get it all done after all!
     I also got some of my own writing done, my office became neater, and dinner was cooked at a reasonable hour. Hmm…
     But…I missed knowing what was going on in the lives of those people I care about.  I missed the slogans and quotes many post to boost the spirit, and I missed the humor others kept alive in me regarding everyday matters.
     I wondered if a friend on vacation was having a nice time. If another friend’s newly published book was getting good feedback. How my cold climate buddies were faring during a record breaking cold snap. And I missed sharing my own small feats and joys of ordinary little things, like posting a picture of a fabulous recipe or a memorable moment.
     So, what does this convey to me about Facebook?  Well, It’s not about ego, as I’d assumed, especially regarding my own participation. Meaning, ‘look at me! I’m beautiful, or I’m so talented, or I have this great life.’ I discovered that Facebook is not about all of that for me. It’s a connection to people I resonate with, care about, and  enjoy.
     It’s sharing ‘who I am and who I’m still becoming’ in posting special moments, silly pics, yummy foods I like, new places visited, experiences, God-given gifts, and even the down times. 
And I feel privileged that my FB ‘friends’ open their lives to me.
     I learn from them, become enthused by them, am entertained by them, and feel an unseen web of support from them. 
     So, is Facebook a bad thing in my life? I don’t think so.  Was I spending too much time on Facebook?  Pretty much.
     I’m only into this ‘giving up Facebook six-days-a-week feat’ for a short time, but I can tell that some changes will occur. Positive ones…insight…better time management…a greater appreciation for the ‘company’ of my cyber space friends, to name a few.  
      So onward I go into this Lenten choice.

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