Why We Quit Facebook {And How To Live Without It!}

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I quit Facebook last week. Yup. Waved goodbye to my personal account for that big blue time-sucker and addictive social giant. Leaving was a hard decision to make, but we said “sayonara” anyways and signed off for good. Click through to find out why we left and to see some suggestions for how to live without a Facebook account.

 

I’ve been toying with the idea of leaving for awhileβ€”mostly fighting it. You see, I love Facebook. I do. It’s where I get all my news, most family updates, and discover new posts from my favorite blogs. I like seeing pictures of my friends’ fun family outings or how acquaintances’ kids are growing. I truly enjoy connecting through liking friends’ pictures or commenting on funny statuses or encouraging through sharing a positive story or blog post. I love it all.

Truth be told, we introverts often use Facebook to prove to the world just how witty and heartfelt we can be, since sometimes conversation in real life holds too much pressure and eye contact so we go all awkward. At least that’s my story.

And since we’re being really honest, maybe I’ve been putting off the leaving because I might have a tinge of that ridiculous new phobia, Fear Of Missing Out. You know, because if I leave then all of a sudden all of my friends will start talking about me behind my cyber back and having a perpetual Party Without Evelyn.

Those are the reasons I didn’t want to leave. So why did I quit? Because I felt God calling me to. I realize that will sound weird to most of you. Many of you think that God wouldn’t care about a silly little thing like Facebook. But He does care about our hearts. God always has our best interest in mind. Many times our definition of “best” doesn’t align with His view, but we are promised in Romans 8:28 that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him.

God knows what is good for me, and His ultimate purpose is to make me more like His Son, Jesus. That process is hindered by blocks like pride, which perhaps Facebook was entertaining for me. I care way too much about what other people think of me, which is why transparent posts like this one are hard to share. Maybe I made Facebook a harbor for pride, where it is too easy a platform to groom an online image through pictures and statuses.

Maybe I checked too often for fresh likes and comments to validate how pretty I am or what a good mother I am or how hilarious my status was.

Maybe I spent too much of my precious time with my children on Facebook. I admit to freely giving attention to an ever-updating news feed when children behind me needed feeding.

I don’t know if I got too caught up in the me-me-me vortex that Facebook paddles. What I do know is that I felt God calling me into a change.

> God called me out of the pride harbor and more deeply into the truth that I am redeemed through His Son. And that is all the validation I need.

> God called me out of turning my gaze toward Facebook and back into the little faces that He gifted me with.

> God called me out of missing real life because I hid behind a screen and back into making real life.

We told our friends that as much as we enjoyed Facebook, it wasn’t necessarily enriching our lives in any tangible way. As much as I’ll miss seeing pictures that friends and family post, I am certain that my kids, my schedule, and my heart will be better off without the constant need to update my status.

 

So is there life after Facebook? YES! Here are three easy tips to live without a Facebook account.

1. Find other ways of acquiring world and national news.

(That’s for those of us without TV). I bookmarked the local news, CNN, FOX and BBC websites so I could see what is going on in the world.

2. Bookmark and subscribe to your favorite blogs or websites.

This one might seem a little self-serving. πŸ˜‰ But seriously, I have several blogs that I love to come straight to my inbox. That way I never miss a post and I can still join discussions on those sites.

3. Email one person a week to catch up. Better yet, get together in person.

The whole point of Facebook is connecting. Without an account, you’ll have to be more intentional about catching up with loved ones. Send out weekly emails or texts to friends and family to say you’re thinking of them. Or pick up the phone and ask how they are. Even better? If you can, get together for coffee or dinner and actually do life in each other’s presence.

 

Oh, and the disclaimer…

I’m nervous about all that sounding too self-righteous, so here’s a couple things for people who might read into anything I said or didn’t say.

I haven’t left social media altogether. I do not think that Facebook is an evil empire. I still get easily sucked into Pinterest and other fun sites, so the journey of being intentional online is ongoing for me. Leaving Facebook was a personal decision for Caveman and I; we aren’t encouraging you to leave unless that’s something you really feel like you should do. We know lots of people who have struggled with some of the pitfalls I mentioned and still limit their interaction on Facebook fantastically. Just sayin’.Β  πŸ™‚

 

Is it just me? Anyone else struggle with how Facebook affects your life and heart? How do you deal with the irresistible pull of social media? Jump in and spill in the comments below.

 

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27 Comments
  • Em
    August 11, 2014

    I think that it is great that you are doing this! In fact, just today I encouraged a friend of mine to do the same because she was teetering on the edge of whether or not this is what God wanted for her and when I saw that last post, I rejoiced because I know God has fabulous things for her during this season. That said, Facebook has been such a gift for me. God has used me to encourage and come along side so many women lately who live nowhere close to me and my availability through Facebook has been a blessing and an open door. In addition, I have a huge family, with no one living even remotely close to me. Being as social as I am AND having 3 very small children leaves very little time to write THAT many letters…or longwinded phone conversations, for that matter, especially if I want to get out of the house to meet up for coffee with friends. So like you said, it is a very personal choice, made with God at the center! I applaud you for your obedience, you rock, girl!!!

    • Evelyn
      August 11, 2014

      Thanks for your sweet words Em!

  • Jenifer
    August 11, 2014

    For me most of my friends live all over the world. I have only two local friends right now, so getting together in person is really challenging. LOL

    Emails are great — we email each other a lot — but FB provides us with the opportunity to chat with each other if we’re both available, to share each other’s lives, and so on.

    But I”m weird. I don’t use my cell phone to check Facebook. I actually hate the smart-ness of my smart phone. LOL I just use it as a phone.

    I have kindle for mac, which is on my lap top, and I work from my lap top, too. So I have FB on then. But honestly, I’m not on it much, so I never feel like it’s too much for me — it’s always just enough.

    And I’ve been without it for 4 days right now (until today), and in a week, I’ll be off for a whole 12 days. I won’t miss much, I’m sure. πŸ™‚

    But it’s great for me. Works for my lifestyle anyway.

    • Evelyn
      August 11, 2014

      Jenifer, I love FB for those reasons too–connecting with far-off friends and loved ones. Guess I’ll have to figure something else out! πŸ˜‰ Thanks for chipping in.

  • Jayleen Zotti
    August 11, 2014

    Facebook is definitely a time sucker, although, lately I haven’t felt the urge to ‘keep up’ and just check it out in my downtime. In January, our church usually does a 20 day fast and I chose to give up Facebook. It was enlightening! I no longer felt inadequate while looking at what everyone else was doing and simply enjoyed what we were doing! I still struggle with this but try to keep in mind that everyone is posting their highlights. Keep us posted on your journey!

    • Evelyn
      August 11, 2014

      Hi Jayleen,
      FB fasts are such a great thing to clear the air a bit. πŸ˜‰ It’s just all about finding the balance I guess. Thanks for commenting!

  • JΓΊlia
    August 12, 2014

    I quit around last June–and it was SO MUCH easier than I had ever imagined. Actually I think there was about 1 time I missed it so far.
    However, I do find my own time suckers on the web till this day… so I can’t say this solved my initial problem. So far to go…

    • Evelyn
      August 12, 2014

      Same here, Julia. Way to be intentional about where you feel led. It’s a process… πŸ™‚

  • Ellie
    August 18, 2014

    I left a couple of months ago after realizing how much time I really spend on it, and pondering the amount of information and photos I’ve posted about my kids (won’t they want to be the ones establishing their own online identity someday?). I miss seeing photos of new babies and am nervous about losing touch with friends from middle school (with whom I only reconnected because of facebook!) but the reality is that 1) those friends with whom I have active relationships have my phone number and I have theirs and 2) my heart was starting to feel both overwhelmed by the number of Fbook ‘relationships’ to maintain and simultaneously lonely in this city where we’ve lived for a year now. Time to only focus on actual relationships! The result has been, as you said, phone and email conversations with my dearest friends as opposed to Facebook comments. Love it!!!

    I am amazed that just after I left Facebook God provided lots of opportunities to get to know my neighbors! Friendships at church are blossoming slowly, too.

    Fun to read your blog again and hear your ‘voice!’ I’ve been forgetting to check without the status update reminders. πŸ™‚ Guess I need to subscribe….

    • Evelyn
      August 19, 2014

      Hi Ellie! Fun to hear from you and hear how leaving FB has enriched your life. I’m already aware of how more intentional I am with my time! Yes, definitely subscribe. I only post once a week, so it’s not like you’ll be getting a ton of mail. πŸ˜‰ Let’s stay in touch!

  • April
    August 30, 2014

    This post summed up very nicely why my husband and I decided a year and a half ago to leave Facebook. I will admit that one of the main things that I used FB for was selling unused items on our local FB sale site. So I created a “sale” account. This has been nice because I can still make a little extra money while I continue to simplify our lives. I can also follow my favorite blogs and couponing sites. I don’t have to deal with the feelings that my life could be better if I could “just be like so-and-so” I also used it as a way to make myself look like this AMAZING mom and person when the truth is that I was ignoring my children so I could paint a picture perfect life online! After a year and a half I know that I will never go back. Sure, there are things that I miss about it but not enough to go back. πŸ™‚ Thank you for being real and sharing with us.

    • Evelyn
      September 1, 2014

      Hi April, thanks for your candid reply! Our local buy-and-sell group on FB is actually one of the biggest things that I miss for practical reasons. Craigslist and other sites just don’t move as quickly as FB groups do! I’ve been nervous to join again for that purpose because I’m afraid I’ll get sucked back in or people will “find” me. Have you had to decline friend requests so you can stay incognito?? πŸ™‚

      • April
        September 1, 2014

        Actually, I haven’t. Only because I created it with only my first name. I made my last name “Sales”. It has work beautifully. πŸ™‚

  • Ana
    August 31, 2014

    Loved your post! I post very little on facebook but I got used to reading what everyone else is saying. I have felt sad and inadequate as I read other people and their children’s accomplishments. I felt that their lives were so much better and exciting. So being on facebook has brought feelings of envy at times and at other times I become so judgemental . This post has helped my resolve to either quit completely or check facebook once a month. I know I won’t miss the important things. Thanks.

    • Evelyn
      September 1, 2014

      Ana, only getting on once a month is a great way of limiting the pull of FB… if you can stick to that. πŸ™‚ You go girl. Thanks for commenting!

  • Daisy @ Simplicity Relished
    August 31, 2014

    Beautiful! I admire your courage and honesty. It’s hard to draw boundaries with something that is almost constantly available to us and that gives us feedback. I wrote a post recently about how tempting it is to live “fake lives” on social media. Would love your thoughts!
    http://simplicityrelished.com/journal-instagram-and-other-fake-lives/

    In grace,
    Daisy

    • Evelyn
      September 1, 2014

      Hey Daisy. Thanks so much for commenting! Yours is a great post on the subject. I especially liked this sentence: “Our blogs only represent a part of us– a coherent, carefully selected facet that is designed to be useful to others. ” So true! It’s a rough balance to strike between being real and transparent, and yet casting a positive hue on pieces of life that can get really hard… all without portraying a life that really isn’t yours. FB, I feel like, makes that last part all too easy! πŸ™‚ Glad you stopped by.

  • Hannah
    October 11, 2014

    Dear Evelyn,

    I found your blog last week, I think through Shannon Martin (Flower Patch Farm Girl). I’m so glad she shared you! I have been enjoying reading your words. Thank you for your beautiful words above. Your obedience and your vulnerability is so much appreciated.

    Peace be with you.

    • Evelyn
      October 12, 2014

      Hi Hannah! I’m so glad to have YOU here. Thanks so much for commenting and saying “hi.” πŸ™‚

  • Sheila Smith
    December 31, 2014

    I just “stumbled” upon this post and it spoke to my heart. I quit facebook last month and i had every intention of going back at the 1st of the Year. I really needed to read this today. Thank you. Love your blog!

    • Evelyn
      January 2, 2015

      Hey Sheila, so glad you found us! Way to go… now, I mostly forget about Facebook and that many people still actually use it. πŸ˜‰ Blessings to you whether you decide to go back or not! πŸ™‚

  • Annie
    November 17, 2015

    I have recently discovered your blog. I left Facebook years ago when I realized what a time-suck it had become for me. I do appreciate that it has its’ uses, (my husband still has his page and it helps him find and connect to potential clients), but it was taking me away from other things I really wanted and needed to be doing. My husband keeps me updated on the items that might be important to me so I don’t feel like I am missing out on anything crucial. I regularly stay in touch with friends and family via email or phone and that’s fine by me.
    I do spend some time reading blog posts and articles online, but I limit it to about an hour or two a day at most. That may seem like a lot, but it’s in bits and pieces throughout the day and since I rarely watch TV I can spare the time most days. I count it as my reading time, along with my books.

    • Evelyn
      November 18, 2015

      Hi Annie! Thanks so much for sharing. I use it for my page, and since have had to join in again just a teeny bit for a group here or there, but my usage is WAY less than it use to be. For that I’m grateful. It sounds like you’ve found wonderful uses for your time! So glad you have you here. Thanks for commenting!

  • Aposte Chad Fisher
    January 9, 2017

    God called me to leave Facebook too. The reasons are numerous. Here are just a few examples. Note: I am not saying that God wants everyone to leave Facebook. I am simply sharingo a personal story:

    1. I was replacing my time with God with my usage of Facebook. Sure, I excused it by saying, “But God I am reading the devotions by Joseph Prince on Facebook every day.” But when you read the next point you will see why this excuse was unjustified. Note: I have a book by Joseph Prince and over 50 Bibles. Facebook was not a necessary replacement. Facebook was my idol!

    “The images you carry are loaded, as a burden for the weary animal.” Isaiah 46:1b

    2. I craved the Drama. Facebook Drama became my God. The intentional and unintentional arguments that happened (whether I initiated it or not) about anything and everything became something of a monster that I hated and enjoyed hating. The emotional ups and downs were quicker than real life and it was a wonderful addiction to have an artificial reason to lose control of my emotions. It was a great place to act irresponsibly and just allow people to be mean to me for any reason because I craved the Drama. The reason I craved the Drama was a byproduct from leaving a mentally and emotionally abusive so called friendship of 3 years. I has missed that which I was attempting to escape, and Facebook was an easy medium. This was lunacy and God Knew it. “But God I’m preaching from the Bible on Facebook. God said, “there are other places you can preach at, Chad. I told you to leave.” Proverbs 13:16, Proverbs 26:4-6, 17-19, Proverbs 2, Ecclesiastes 7:9

    3. Having a lot of “friends” became more important than serving God behind the scenes! Read that again, so that it sinks in.

    “A man with many friends may be harmed, but there is a friend closer than a brother.”
    Proverbs 19:24

    4. Facebook became an addiction. Anything can become an addiction if we are not careful. The Drama that was exposed to me, intentionallly and unintentionally was my upper and downer! My emotions were all over the place. This messed with my mind, and it was sickeningly great! It was a trip. And though I hated it, I loved it too, no matter how mad I was driving myself. I never really had much of an addictive personality too much anything, except Andy Griffith episodes and reading. But hear me. Anytime social media becomes a “need” in your mind, you have an addiction problem on the face of it, pun intended! If you hear your mind say “I NEED to check Facebook”, “I need to see what so and so is doing” or something of that sort, you are thinking exactly like an addict! Unless you are using Facebook as your sole source for job, income, and relationships and grocery shopping, you don’t need it. Even then, you don’t really need it, because you can do all those same things without a Facebook account… think. You just think you need Facebook, but it’s a lie.

    5. God never told me to use Facebook. Now, God never told me to do many things that I do that He doesn’t mind me doing. But with this point, go back to point #1. I was using Facebook as an artificial replacement. Do you understand? So I went to Egypt like Abram did without the advice of God. I didn’t lie to the king saying that my wife was my sister, but I did lie to myself saying that since I was using Facebook to read and preach the gospel that God wanted me to use it… but the truth is… I was addicted to Facebook and addicted to the Drama that I could find at a click of the button, literally speaking! God never instructed me to use Facebook. I did.

    I don’t know how long God wants me to stay off Facebook. I don’t know if He will call me to use the tool in a different way in the future. I do know that He doesn’t want me on it right now so that I can focus on His will. Thus, in conclusion, I am obeying His instructions and Fasting from Facebook indefinitely. God Bless.

  • Apostle Chad Fisher
    January 9, 2017

    God called me to leave Facebook too. The reasons are numerous. Here are just a few examples. Note: I am not saying that God wants everyone to leave Facebook. I am simply sharingo a personal story:

    1. I was replacing my time with God with my usage of Facebook. Sure, I excused it by saying, “But God I am reading the devotions by Joseph Prince on Facebook every day.” But when you read the next point you will see why this excuse was unjustified. Note: I have a book by Joseph Prince and over 50 Bibles. Facebook was not a necessary replacement. Facebook was my idol!

    “The images you carry are loaded, as a burden for the weary animal.” Isaiah 46:1b

    2. I craved the Drama. Facebook Drama became my God. The intentional and unintentional arguments that happened (whether I initiated it or not) about anything and everything became something of a monster that I hated and enjoyed hating. The emotional ups and downs were quicker than real life and it was a wonderful addiction to have an artificial reason to lose control of my emotions. It was a great place to act irresponsibly and just allow people to be mean to me for any reason because I craved the Drama. The reason I craved the Drama was a byproduct from leaving a mentally and emotionally abusive so called friendship of 3 years. I has missed that which I was attempting to escape, and Facebook was an easy medium. This was lunacy and God Knew it. “But God I’m preaching from the Bible on Facebook. God said, “there are other places you can preach at, Chad. I told you to leave.” Proverbs 13:16, Proverbs 26:4-6, 17-19, Proverbs 2, Ecclesiastes 7:9

    3. Having a lot of “friends” became more important than serving God behind the scenes! Read that again, so that it sinks in.

    “A man with many friends may be harmed, but there is a friend closer than a brother.”
    Proverbs 19:24

    4. Facebook became an addiction. Anything can become an addiction if we are not careful. The Drama that was exposed to me, intentionallly and unintentionally was my upper and downer! My emotions were all over the place. This messed with my mind, and it was sickeningly great! It was a trip. And though I hated it, I loved it too, no matter how mad I was driving myself. I never really had much of an addictive personality too much anything, except Andy Griffith episodes and reading. But hear me. Anytime social media becomes a “need” in your mind, you have an addiction problem on the face of it, pun intended! If you hear your mind say “I NEED to check Facebook”, “I need to see what so and so is doing” or something of that sort, you are thinking exactly like an addict! Unless you are using Facebook as your sole source for job, income, and relationships and grocery shopping, you don’t need it. Even then, you don’t really need it, because you can do all those same things without a Facebook account… think. You just think you need Facebook, but it’s a lie.

    5. God never told me to use Facebook. Now, God never told me to do many things that I do that He doesn’t mind me doing. But with this point, go back to point #1. I was using Facebook as an artificial replacement. Do you understand? So I went to Egypt like Abram did without the advice of God. I didn’t lie to the king saying that my wife was my sister, but I did lie to myself saying that since I was using Facebook to read and preach the gospel that God wanted me to use it… but the truth is… I was addicted to Facebook and addicted to the Drama that I could find at a click of the button, literally speaking! God never instructed me to use Facebook. I did.

    I don’t know how long God wants me to stay off Facebook. I don’t know if He will call me to use the tool in a different way in the future. I do know that He doesn’t want me on it right now so that I can focus on His will. Thus, in conclusion, I am obeying His instructions and Fasting from Facebook indefinitely. God Bless.

  • Apostle Chad Fisher
    January 9, 2017

    (I apologize for the duplicatemail comments. Technical difficulties. I hope you can delete one of them and this cooment on your end. Thank you.

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