Wednesday, September 14, 2011

An Experiment with Facebook

Picture source.

My usual day starts like this at 5:30 a.m. each morning:

- Wake up
- Quickly greet God, His Blessed Mother and my guardian Angel
- Turn on my iPod touch to check email and Facebook
- Get out of bed and on my knees to pray the Morning Offering
- Get ready for Mass

Now depending on how the emails or status postings are on Facebook, I noticed it would set a tone for my otherwise happy early morning. Any troublesome emails or status reports would put me in a troubled mood or even a bad mood. Not a good way to start the day with the Lord.

Then I started realizing that I was checking Facebook statuses a lot during the day and sometimes a status report would annoy me, and I have to admit...make me envious, or competitive, etc. These feelings were not helping my spiritual life at all!  In fact, I noticed that the more I was on Facebook, the more I would be fighting temptations. My peace of mind was eluding me.  The more I was on Facebook, the more time I was wasting. The more I was on Facebook, the less joy I was having in my day.

I knew that right now I could not delete my account because some close family and friends use Facebook as the preferred avenue of contacting me. But I also knew I had to distance myself from the bad Facebook.

I decided I would not log into my account. I also decided that I could check messages or notifications via my iPod touch without seeing the newsfeed.  This way I could still see if anyone tried to contact me about something important.

So, I did that for the last few days. I must say, I have been quite content about this decision. Not only have I notice my joy not going away because of some silly reason but I also have more time to actually perform my daily duties and also more time for spiritual reading.

Today though, I did login to see if I missed anything important. And, of course I did not. Will I go back to being a regular on Facebook? I am not sure. I sure did not miss it when I gave it up for Lent for two years in a row. I kind of like it not being a part of my daily routine.


Anne said...

Esther, this is a very interesting and timely post! I hadn't been a very big fan of facebook and hardly used it since I first signed up, but lately, I find I'm checking it frequently. Truthfully, I can find a bit of envy creeping up in my spirit as well, but mostly I think it's still a good thing for me right now. I admire you for having the courage to recognize when it gets to be a problem and to walk away. You're giving a wonderful example!

Spence Ohana said...

It's like taking a fast from Facebook newsfeed. I think it's a great idea! I too experience some of those same feelings you are talking about.

elena maria vidal said...

Glad I am not the only one! Now that I have a job I do not have as much time on FB and I am a much happier person!

Esther G. said...

Anne, Melissa, and Elena, thanks for taking the time to comment. I thought I was the only one feeling this way. I feel I am in good company as you are three of women whose opinions I respect ans value so much.

mary333 said...

Okaaaay, well my first thought after reading this and the comments was "Oh! Anne and Elena are on Facebook? I'll have to friend them." My second thought was "Thank you for the warning, Esther." It should have been the other way around.

I am new on there but I can see what the big draw is. Thanks for your honesty in this post.

Esther G. said...

LOL Mary! But seriously, first I was caught up in the "friendship" thing with so many Catholic "celebs". Then I realized they have no clue who I am nor do they really care what I posted. It made me appreciate what true friendship really is.

mary333 said...

You mean there's such a thing as Catholic celebs? Lol! Surely you jest ;)

Esther G. said...

...or am I? ;-)

Sarah Oldham said...

I love and admire your honesty. Perhaps I shall limit how much time I spend on FB as well as only check in the AM and PM - but only after I have prayed morning prayers. I'm off to conference this weekend and I'll just pray about it then. FB has caused a few bumps in the road for me in the past, so I can see the trouble it can be . . . it's nice to push it aside for a time, if needs be. God bless!

Esther G. said...

Thanks Sarah. It is making a small difference.

Regan said...

Hi Esther,

It's funny that I should read this the day after I deleted my facebook account....

So far, I don't miss it that much. I have also noticed that not being on it has helped in the general mood around our house.

God bless you and I will now be tracking you solely through the blogosphere. :)

Esther G. said...

Oh wow, really Regan? Deleting may just be my next step. Thanks for stopping by.