This Month's Topic: Focus on Finance

Because the World (i.e. Facebook) Can Wait

I recently read a statistic that said people check their phones an average of 150 times a day, and that they can’t go six minutes without looking at it. Seriously?! That can’t possibly be right.

Then again, as I pause to check my phone, it might not be that far off…

Reading that statistic really made me think about my life and my relationship with technology, which naturally brought me to Facebook.

Facebook first started when I was a freshman in college. I still remember people talking about this thing called “The Facebook” and something called “poking people.” Eventually, I gave in to the hype and decided to check it out. I still remember signing up and entering my college e-mail. Can you believe that, back in the day, you had to have a college e-mail address to join Facebook? Can you also believe that, back in the day, you weren’t able to access Facebook from your phone or iPad? How did we LIVE, people?!

Well, last year I found out.

Last winter, after a few months of trying to become pregnant, I had a miscarriage. While I know miscarriages are very common, that knowledge didn’t make my experience any less painful. I was devastated. At that point, I was angry at the world and the last thing I wanted to see was people on Facebook announcing their pregnancies and posting pictures of their new babies. (Listen, I understand that this was incredibly selfish and mean of me, but you can’t help the way you feel.)

I decided that I needed to take a break from Facebook, for my own sanity. My sister Sarah, who was pretty spectacular at the time, decided that she would get off Facebook with me. And so, together, we logged off Facebook and deleted our accounts. There was no going back. (I’m pretty sure Colleen had just joined Facebook and was still finding it fascinating. I couldn’t take that away from her.)

I stayed off Facebook and, honestly, my phone for a year, until I had Austin. Once I became pregnant with Austin, I considered joining again, but then as the pregnancy took a few unexpected turns and wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be, I decided not to rejoin the cyber community. I felt guarded and had gotten used to my life without Facebook.

It was pretty easy, in fact.2013-05-30T14-10-18_0

My sisters told me repeatedly that I would join again once I had Austin. I remember thinking, “No way. I will not post pictures of my son on Facebook. Those are private!”

Alas, here I am, back on Facebook and posting pictures of Austin every time I get the chance. I gave in. I came back to Facebook because I took about a million pictures of Austin during his first five months of life and decided I should let everyone enjoy my beautiful son. (Have I mentioned there’s a slight possibility I’m biased?)

When I think about how often I pause from playing with Austin to glance at my phone and scroll through the news feed on Facebook, it really gives me pause. What, exactly, am I hoping to see that is more exciting than the baby boy smiling up at me? Nothing.

That statistic gave me the wake-up call I needed.

I now pledge that for this month – and, hopefully, longer – I will take 10 minutes at the end of each day, after Austin has gone to sleep, to check Facebook.

The world can wait, because my whole world is right in front of me.

About Jill

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  1. That last sentence?
    Beautiful – you nailed it, sister!
    I am totally guilty of Facebook obsession and even though I’m aware of it, I still check my page and my blog’s page every spare moment — in line at the grocery store, while I’m waiting for the water to boil, while I’m on the potty (you know everyone does it), during commercial breaks…
    And just the other day I said to my husband, “I kind of wish our internet would break so I wouldn’t feel so much pressure to be on the computer all day and I’d have an excuse to read a book.”
    How sad is that??
    Great post — I’m sharing via Twitter and FB from the Honest Voices pimping thread! (The irony is so not lost on me…)

    • Thanks Michelle! I am finding it easier and easier to wait until the end of the day to check my phone and honestly as I scroll through my Facebook at the end of the day, the posts that I used to eagerly read are seeming very unimportant. (It might be that I’m so exhausted at the end of the day that I really don’t care what they say!) And, I just downloaded 3 books to my Nook! Here’s to reading books and not Facebook :)

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