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Five Things I Learned after deactivating my Facebook account

One fine midnight, I deactivated my Facebook account. For curiosity, fun and solitude. Just like that - it is curiosity that initially made me do it and then my need for absolute solitude. To be honest, it was like getting a slice of heaven.


Let me explain a bit more about curiosity and solitude if you have time to listen.

Curiosity to know if any friend on Facebook would note that I am not there anymore. Solitude and the need to meditate, to listen and reconnect with myself.

Five Lessons on Life after Facebook

So, yes, its a combination of both that made me take this decision. And here is what I learned after I deactivated from Facebook:

1. Out of 790 friends on Facebook, there are less than 20 friends who reached out by mail/phone call/twitter to ask if everything is fine at my end.  Out of the 20 friends, many of them called to ask if I had removed them as friends on Facebook!

2. Only five were women. And before you jump to conclusions, let me affirm: I am a firm believer of gender equality, okay? Nothing changes it. Hahaha!

3.  Three were top publishing professionals from the book publishing industry and 8 were friends from law college. 

4. Friends that I am close with in real life barely noticed. When I told them I deactivated, the responses were like, "Good, finally! You needed to get out of Facebook. You were practically living there." Now, why didn't they tell me that before huh? 

5. NOW this one is really important: I began to feel tremendous POSITIVE energy and had more time to LISTEN WITH LOVE & HAPPINESS to each and every person around me after I totally deactivated from Facebook. 

I mean, really listen with love. 

Heart to heart, eye to eye. Think about it. When is the last time you had a heart to heart conversation with any person, when you listened to every single word that was being conveyed to you? 

You've got to figure it out before life passes by in a flash. It's the real conversations that matter. Period.

Through all this, this most important learning for me has been this: Step out of your comfort zone. Don't stay where you are stagnant. Do something that makes life feel happier, simpler and doubly beautiful for you. 

I can't help quoting my favorite Mr. Rochester here. He tells Jane in Charlotte Bronte's immortal classic Jane Eyre:

“Because," he said, "I sometimes have a queer feeling with regard to you--especially when you are near me, as now: it is as if I had a string somewhere under my left ribs, tightly and inextricably knotted to a similar string situated in the corresponding quarter of your little frame. And if that boisterous channel, and two hundred miles or so of land come broad between us, I am afraid that cord of communion will be snapt; and then I've a nervous notion I should take to bleeding inwardly. As for you,--you'd forget me.” 

And remember this: The people who TRULY care about you will always find a way to reach you no matter how busy or far they are. You fear they will forget. They won't. They could be continents apart but if they care, they will find a way beyond Facebook. Trust in the power of the Universe to bring them to you exactly when you need them most. They will be there for you. 

♥♥  I thank you with all my heart for reading my post. I dedicate this post with love and gratitude to all those who are finding their own ways to make life easier, happier and better for themselves and for the others around them. REQUEST: Please SHARE this article on your favorite social networks. Every share, like or tweet makes me reach out to more people who are in various phases of finding their own happiness in life. I am grateful and I appreciate you for doing so. ♥♥

Comments

Shilpa Garg said…
Well done, Swapna!! We must take ourselves away from these technological trappings every once in a while. It is cathartic for the mind and the body!! I must do this too sometimes soon!!
I like this look of your blog! :)
Vinaya Naidu said…
Well, I have a great life minus Facebook anyways;)

Good experimentation...wonder if you will look at the Facebook world differently when you go back...another social media friend did the same and found more time on his hands and also improved productivity.
Vishnu said…
Hi Swapna - I did wonder what happened to you from Facebook when you left and glad to read the explanation and lessons here. I understand your biggest point of how leaving Facebook means more presence and positivity in your life.

I started facebook late and have got hooked on it haha. I find that I'm able to keep in touch with friends and family around the world. i have been guilty of asking people who ask me, "how are you" - have you checked out my facebook page lol. So, I update almost everything I'm doing there including trips and photos, etc.

Also, I keep facebook positive by using their options like hiding negative posts, dismissing negative people from my feed and following more positive and inspirational people. I've found facebook as a source of inspiration and positivity. The negatives for me are time wasted and it being a distraction.

I have at times thought of getting off facebook but reconsidered. I am glad to see you on Twitter though and i hope i don't see a similar post on this subject about your twitter departure:)
Mélange said…
What a positive note dear ! Loved this mainly coz' its from a person who was into it.In fact,however I try to convince many,remain futile.haha..Don't mind.I in fact have seen you there at Google plus.Though naturally I have that coming along with gmail,I am till date not sure to go with it.After watching your posts,I somehow feel I can have this as an option in future.If I ever do that,you will be the first person to add..Long live your happiness and peace dear.
harish p i said…
Great! I had deactivated my account for a few months. It was good.
Anonymous said…
I also have deactivated my account for some different reason. But doesn't facebook make easier to be in contact with our friends? As these days we are very much busy with our own life, though we care about friends we cannot call each and everyone specially and ask them how they are... So if we have facebook we can easily be in touch with all our friends i think...! As everything has limit we should decide ourselves the time we spend on social networking sites... :)
Avada Kedavra said…
I have deactivated my account in the past, but now I use it just to keep myself up to date with the news and happenings. I log in just once a day and spend less than 10 mins.
@Shilpa: Thanks for liking the new look:) Being off from Facebook temporarily is more like a detox, it feels healthy and cuts down so much clutter from one's time and life, right?

@Vinaya: Good for you, Vinaya! Nothing can be a substitute for real life, real happiness. No, I don't think I will look at the Facebook world or my Facebook friends differently. I feel different and rejuvenated, so that's the best experience for me to take away from this and also to move forward with.

@Melange: Nice to read your thoughts on this. I know what you mean because a lot of people I spoke echoed the same sentiment as you while trying to convince others. Would be thrilled if you do add me on Fb...once i am back:)
Dear Vishnu,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts here. Like you stated, I too started Facebook late but I saw it as a great way to stay in touch with friends, cousins and relatives.

I like your tips here where you talk about how you keep Facebook a positive experience for yourself.

Personally, I've found Twitter to be a more inspiring source of positive energy because I feel that people are more true to themselves on Twitter and they aren't portraying picture perfect lives there but of course, I may be talking about this from my point of view.

For instance, I have been able to connect and make friends with some amazing bloggers like you through Twitter, not Facebook. It's been that way throughout the last ten years. But that is not to say that Facebook hasn't been positive.

Some of my best career developments and milestones happened through my contacts on Facebook. It also enables me to be personally and directly in touch with top publishing professionals, authors, that sort of thing. I get insights about their lives that I wouldn't on Twitter.

I see both Facebook and Twitter as integral to my growth as a writer and a social media enthusiast but I needed a break - which means when I feel the time is ripe, I will make a comeback on Facebook:)

The negatives you mentioned are true in a sense. I found that I am able to spend more time with my son doing productive things like story telling, reading and so on after I logged out of Facebook. Once we are logged in, we forget to track time.

Hahaa, on a lighter note, I don't think you will see me leaving Twitter even for a short break:)
@Harish I am glad to hear that. Whatever brings positive energy into your life, embrace it. Whatever does the opposite, the best course of action is to junk it:)

@Anonymous: There's nothing wrong about being on Facebook. I like your point - that we should be able to limit the time and effort we spend there. That is exactly what I plan to do when I get back on to Facebook - whenever that is. Thanks for sharing your views here.

@Avada: That's awesome! You have already mastered time management on Facebook then and I haven't done that consciously but whenever I get back on Facebook, I will. So, it is good to know from you that yes, it is possible:)
adee said…
:) now i know! :D
i want to and will be in touch!
@Adee: Now that's reassuring, thanks so much Adee! Btw, we became friends through Twitter and Tweet ups! So, it isn't a Facebook connection:))
a.M.Y.T.H said…
Comparing to twitter, people used to post more positive things/events of their life in Facebook.

So if someone can't find happiness in other's success, they feel depressed.

Thus the only way is stop being envious, smile from heart.

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