I mentioned weeks ago that my own simple way of observing the Lenten Season (apart from the praying and reflective activities) is to abstain from Facebook…Just like any other person who is starting to create a habit, I had the fair share of being surrounded with temptations to not finish my weeks’ pursuit. However, Holy Week is here and just days away till Easter Sunday, so this would be an easy get-go for me.
For the past few weeks, I’ve come to think that if for some they can’t live without logging in Facebook, how come there are also those who even don’t have an account in there and yet survive? Now that motivated me all the more to keep abstaining for the site. But did it help me or did something nice to me in a way? Well, since I’m sure most don’t have an idea, let me share to you the ways…
1. Time Management
Ok, some of you would say, yeah sure…it’s like you don’t spend the whole day logging in Facebook. Hmmm…True. But let me ask you, how many times in a day does a user go lurking, sending a message, posting photos and status messages, liking posts and photos and commenting on them? This is considering that anywhere one goes now, the thing is “Do you have free wifi?”. If we multiply the number of times a person spends in it to the number of minutes spent on it, that could have been an ample time spent for other activities. Somehow, the hiatus made me spend time on other stuff like reading, blogging and even sleeping more.
2. In Focus / Concentration
Admit it or not, getting hooked in social networking sites sometimes distracts us in our work or important activities. We can’t help but open that FB account and go lurking once in a while, but at times, it leads us to lurking some more. Before we know it, our boss is calling us already for what we need to work on for the day. We even try to minimize the window so our bosses won’t see what we are doing in between workloads…The hiatus made me move away from the FB addiction and just concentrate on the things I need to do (of course, sleeping is an exemption to that).
In addition, not just a way to focus on the daily grind, but even on the non-work related things I need to deal with. Being online in FB leads one see the status messages or updates of their connections. In a way, it is nice because you get to be updated. However, one can’t help but compare how far you have progressed from others in various aspects. No matter how many times we say or hear on quotes of not comparing yourself to others’ lives, but FB indirectly affects us.
3. A step higher towards healthy lifestyle
It has been proven so many times in the news that getting hooked much on the internet, gaming and other related stuff can cause weight gains, poor eye vision / eye strains and long-term diseases due to immobility. Before the hiatus, I used to check on my FB account either after office hours or weekends / holidays. Lately, it may have just been a few weeks but now it lead me to less munching while in front of the computer and less eye strains. It also improved a bit of my sleeping habits this past few weeks (though there are still in between sleepless nights, due to work…grrrr). The hiatus made sleep earlier than usual on weekdays and go on power naps on weekends (when I’m just at home).
4. Connecting folks — direct and/or essential
True enough that social networks helped us in a way to communicate with family and friends who are across the miles or whom we haven’t seen for years. However, for our other connections who are just a few streets away or within our vicinity, networks become an excuse not to move around and enclose ourselves in front of that box. Relationships aren’t built by merely words and lip service. It’s more on the moments and interfaces you make with people. The physical presence and the efforts of taking time to be with loved ones will always matter more than virtual connections. That’s what I learned from this hiatus.
5. An added dash of optimism and motivation
This actually sums up what the previous items can lead to. If those listed are what we become or learn, this is what happens in effect. Instead of being bombarded with hate or opposing comments or thoughts or rumors from other people, it lessens the possibility thru making self a step away from this social network. No need for much explanation in this area, but sure enough, it will eventually lead to this path.
True enough, social networks can make or break a person depends on how one will utilize it. Thanks to these technologies, we can now communicate to anyone, anywhere in the world. It helps bridge the gaps of distances, but it can also break hearts and relationships, if abused or misused. There are days when I wanna log-in and update a bit of me. However, I must admit, there is now also a part of my social-networking-junkie-in-my-system that wants to step back on the Mark Zuckerberg founded site. There’s also that side of me that starting to feel that I’m soon to outgrow the fondness that Facebook is giving to most of its users. It may look like an introvert’s move to anti-socialism, but let me emphasize that I’m just choosing and preferring to eventually be a sensible social networking individual. There are other avenues wherein I can express myself with collective thoughts that would make people relate or inspire, rather than simply sharing updates.
In this plight, I’m not sure for how long I would try to keep having a personal FB page and soon deactivate it. Maybe if I would maintain one soon, it’ll be for my blog or for a business I might work on in the near future. For now, to all my connections in Facebook who might be taking their time to read this, let’s keep ourselves updated.
And to add, in observance of the Holy Week Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Black Saturday), I will be unplugging myself from my other social networking sites (Twitter, Instagram and even here in WordPress). This is just my online detox moment…Besides, though it should be a daily habit, it’s the period of setting aside everything and offering time for the Lord without complaints or questions.
To all my fellow faithfuls around the world, may you have a blessed and meaningful Holy Week Triduum ahead and advance Happy Easter!
Temporarily signing off…xoxo,