How I've survived two months without Facebook


TL;DR version:

It was easy, I just uninstalled the app and never opened it again.

Slightly longer version:

I’m “plugged in” pretty much all the time. Whether it be emails, conducting technical projects, working through issues via IM or collaborating via WebEx, Internet is pretty much my lifeline from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Outside of those hours, my phone is beeping, blooping and buzzing to get my attention about other things, most of which are not life-and-death. Ok, none of them are.

The one time a year I’m unplugged (whether I like it or not) is when my family takes a week of summer vacation up north. The cell reception is mostly non-existent, and the only way I can connect to wifi is if I stand outside the property manager’s office and get eaten alive by mosquitos. So, I pretty much just consider myself “off the grid” for the week. And to my surprise, I’ve started looking forward to this period of being disconnected.

This year, I was shocked to walk into the cabin to find that all the cabins were connected to each other with fiber, and high-speed wireless was covering the entire property. Now we could be at the beach or down by the campfire and never miss an online moment! Yay, right?!

Actually, it was more like “nay” for me. I took a quick peek at my Facebook feed one last time, and noticed the posts were pretty much all in the same categories they’d been in since…well, forever:

I decided to uninstall the Facebook app and try to live as disconnected as possible for the week. The vacation passed quickly, and when we were packing to come home, I noticed I hadn’t really missed the glaring red “You’ve got a notification!” next to the giant F on my phone, nor did I miss the constant vibration of my phone in my pocket, begging “Look at me! Look at me pleeeeeaaaaaaase!!!”

So I decided to continue the experiment for a little longer and, well, here we are 2+ months later. Now in fairness, maybe I’m an antisocial jerkface, but I have not had the urge - even once - to fire up FB. Instead, this abstinence has made me think, “How can I do a better job of connecting and reconnecting individually with people in my life?” rather than just go “Hey I was eating food at a place, here’s a picture of it, please comment and like!”

I’m still figuring that out…while I look at Twitter ;-)