Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Breaking the Facebook Habit

© Can Stock Photo / SergeyNivens
As I mentioned in a prior post, I'm pretty much done with Facebook. And as much as I'd like to close out my account completely, I can't because as an author, I get traffic on my professional pages. I also get a significant amount of blog traffic from Facebook. So, like it or not, I'm stuck there. However, I'm no longer creating content or engaging with other users like I was before. 

Facebook really did take up too much of my time. I'd log on to see if I was getting any responses on my posts, and the next thing I knew I was getting sucked in sharing memes and commenting on other people's posts. A half hour, or more, would go by without my even knowing it. That's a lot of wasted time, particularly when you're self employed. Nowadays I hardly log into Facebook as I do most of my Facebook posting via the social share links from my blog, and most of them go to my professional pages, not my personal newsfeed.

On a personal level, I'm amazed at how much less anxious and depressed I feel. Feeling happy truly is liberating. There is so much negative energy on Facebook that I now consider it toxic. It's become a cesspool of trolls, haters, name callers and misinformation that most days left me feeling upset and angry. I don't tolerate uncivil behavior in real life, so why was I putting up with it on Facebook? The trolls and haters are like cockroaches. I'd block one, and then it seemed like five more appeared out of nowhere. 

So, how am I spending my time without Facebook? In a word, productively. I have several blogs, (they're all listed in my sidebar), and I'm spending more time blogging. In fact, I now blog nearly every day. I was wasting so much time on Facebook, thinking that sharing funny memes about being a writer was helping me promote my books, that my blogs were collecting dust. As authors, our blogs are a vital part of our marketing platform. I'm also spending more time doing the things I really enjoy doing, like photography. And I'm getting more writing done. Nothing sucks the creativity out of you quite like being attacked by Facebook trolls because you think the sky is blue.

Meantime the Facebook controversies rage on, and it seems everyday there's another news article about Facebook and all its troubles. And while I don't think Facebook will vanish completely, it's most certainly imploding on itself. It will never again be the powerhouse it once was, and we'll all be much better off because of it. 


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