Facebook and Real Life: What I Learned By Logging Off


Apparently it's confession week around here. Monday I owned up to my junk food addiction and today...well it's all about Facebook.

This past weekend I took a small Facebook break. Thursday I found myself getting irritated at silly things people posted online, and instead of commenting and making a mess of things, I decided to log off for a few days. I had lots of laundry to catch-up on and the weather was beautiful! It seemed like a good time to enjoy "real life" for a change.

Real life is pretty cute! 

Now, I'm not going to pretend I didn't get on Facebook at all for 3 days. I still had notifications going to my phone, so anytime I was tagged or someone wrote on my wall I knew about it. I just choose to not respond and not to check my newsfeed.

Surprisingly, it was a great three days! I learned several things about my social media life. 

1. I'm not nearly as busy as I think I am. 
I feel busy because most of the time I'm doing something, but I'm starting to realize that I can't put reading blogging, sharing things on Facebook, or even blogging on my "busy list". I do this for fun. My blog, Facebook, and all other forms of social engagement are really to keep me from getting bored at home with two little kids. They don't get to count as busy. 

2. I feel more relaxed when I'm not online. 
Friday as I sat around during nap time I realized how refreshed I felt. I spent most of the morning play with the kids, and the first couple hours of nap time catching up on housework. I listened to several sermons before I finally settled down with my Bible for a while. And to think, this could be my life every day if I would just get off the internet! 

Can't find that on the internet! Oh wait...

3. I have real friends online. I know everyone says that "online friends aren't real friends," but you guys haven't met my blogging friends. I love these ladies inside and out. We pray together, share each other's posts, and encourage one another. Because we are all online we have the freedom to chat whenever and "hang out" together without every leaving our living rooms. Of course, online friends shouldn't replace our real-life friends, but they are real people and these are real relationships. Let's not cheapen that just because we have't actually met in person (which Lord willing we will one day!)

I realized this weekend that my use of Facebook really comes down to balance. Balancing my time online with my time doing housework and cooking supper. Balancing my online friendships with the attention I give my spouse and my kids. Balancing the time I spend in front of a screen with the time I spend praying, reading God's Word, and just enjoying God's creation. 

The internet provides us with a unique opportunity to reach out and get to know new people, to witness to unbelievers, and to encourage others who are struggling through the Christian life. 

But it can also be a time wasting vortex that leaves you with piles of dirty laundry, cranky kids, and lots of "busyness". 
Just a minute sweetie. Mom's on Facebook.

I'll continue to enjoy my time online, friendships, Facebook, and blogging, but I'm also going to be more intentional about logging off, shutting down, and letting some parts of the social media/blogging world pass me by. 


How do you manage your time online? Do you ever take social media breaks to intentionally enjoy real life? 

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  1. Katherine, this has to be one of my favorite posts. I have been feeling convicted of the same. The spiritual growth that has been shining through your posts lately is truly beautiful! I know you mentioned these past months have been hard for you, but wow is God doing wonders through you. I am inspired.

  2. What a great reminder! I took a social media break a few weeks back and have already forgotten all of the cool things I learned by doing this. I think balance is key - it's important (in a way) to be involved online, but if you neglect your real life, things will suffer all around. I love unplugging online and plugging in to my online life, family and friends. Plus, if I'm unplugged I've got more good stuff to talk about when I do plug in! :)

    Nicole @ WKH

  3. Katherine, I wrote this a few years ago and while I was reading your post this poem came to mind. Enjoy!


  4. This is so true! I didn't download the facebook app on my phone for that reason, I wanted some separation. I keep Shabbat, so I have a built in unplugged time, and it always helps me refocus. Last week we had a three day holiday where I didn't turn on my computer at all and it was so freeing!

  5. What a great reminder! I have been trying on & off to stay off of Facebook more & more these past few weeks...it hasn't been easy, but I find it much more enjoyable to interact with real people & the real world (although I too have lovely online friends!). Thanks so much for sharing! It is definitely a trend in our day & age..

  6. I love that you were also lead to break away for a bit. Isn't it sweet to experience real life? I'm aiming for better balance and recently blogged about my 2 month break from internet and t.v. It was rough, but here's what I experienced, http://redeemingher.blogspot.com/2013/09/hello-blog.html



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