Short version: I've broken up with Facebook.
Long version, in the form of a mental conversation held with myself many, many times over the last couple of years:
Me: I need to cut back on all the ways I waste time.
Mind: Such as Facebook?
Me: Maybe, but, you know, other stuff too. All the activities that are mostly just adding to my stress instead of helping me.
Mind: So, Facebook.
Me: Haha, but it's handy to have a login there, in case people need to tag me.
Mind: So that you can come to the site and wind up wasting tons of time on Facebook.
Me: I guess, but also, I mean, the news, I should avoid the news. That's just an endless stream of upsetting stuff.
Mind: So is Facebook. Which also is half advertising and news stories these days.
Me: Well...I could just try avoiding Facebook but going to it sometimes...
Mind: We've tried that. You suck at it. You end up spending as much time there as ever. Pull the plug.
Me: But I have to keep my author page. Marketing says I have to.
Mind: So keep that. Pull the plug on the main one, though. You know it felt good that one time you did it before.
Me: Well...true...but people might forget about me.
Mind: People you've never met, or hardly ever see? You were just complaining about how you wanted more time to yourself, and more time for the people you know in real life.
Me: Hm. Then. Okay. Yes.
Also, I was tired of having snark lobbed at me on my page when I don’t do that on other people’s pages. Tired of people forgetting there are human beings on the other end of the internet. Tired of keeping track of everyone else’s drama. And tired of the clickbait, and the ads, and the hiding of posts, and everything else FB does wrong. I’m sure I do have “issues” to work out (look up "generalized anxiety disorder" and "highly sensitive person" to name two of the major ones), but I would submit that so do lots and lots of my friends list, and they may not even realize how much worse FB is making those issues.
Today in the wake of clicking the "delete" button, I feel drained and still tired, but lighter. Freer. Once I unhook the Pavlovian reaching for social media from my brain ("An interesting thought! I should post it on Facebook!"), I will probably be freer still. Of course, I did come back here, to social media, to discuss it, but LJ has always been better at being a solid and fairly sedate record of life, rather than a snark-comment badminton-match like Facebook. (And lately, like, almost no one is around on LJ anyway.)
Stuff I'm doing and enjoying instead: Amazon Prime's music library is pretty sweet. That has supplied me with a delightful soundtrack of all kinds of stuff the last few days. And I've been watching "Merlin" on Netflix, and am now in the early episodes of season 4. Adorable Arthuriana angst and sparkly magic and all-too-easy slash potential! Yay! And of course, loads more time for reading and writing. (The reading lately is book 2 of Cinda Williams Chima's Seven Realms series - fun mostly-teen high fantasy with a refreshing Native-American-like slant to some of the tribes.)
This weekend I plan to spend more time outdoors, sitting under leafy trees, gazing at Puget Sound, picking flowers, that kind of thing. May you be fortunate enough to do similar. Cheers!