Life Without Facebook (Sort of): Part 3

Life without Facebook

I’ve been back on Facebook in a limited capacity since February.

The only reason I rejoined was because Udemy, the organization I offer my online training courses through, has several faculty groups on the platform. I wanted to be able to ask questions of Udemy staff and interact with other Udemy instructors. I found this particularly helpful when I was creating my first course and as I began marketing my courses. For the most part it’s been a good experience. People there have been helpful and supportive.

I’ve limited my Facebook time to these groups and a few dog-focused pages that usually just make me smile. And I share my blog posts and the occasional article on my own Facebook pages. I also check Twitter periodically, mostly just to see what my daughter is up to.

So, I was thinking, Maybe I can do this social media thing after all.

This is how it can work. Being amongst a supportive group of people with a common interest (online education) is actually a good use of social media.

It was working OK for me, until once again, it wasn’t.

I started bumping into the trolls and experiencing the ugly things some people say and do, to people they don’t even know. How easy it is for people to spew out nasty comments, attacking language, and even participate in name calling, with people they’ve never met in person. People they don’t know beyond what they post on social media.

I’ve witnessed people clearly misrepresenting themselves. People hiding behind the anonymity of the Internet, doing and saying things I doubt they would do or say in person (or at least I hope so).

I’ve had people bully me, call me names, and be flat out rude to me. People I’ve never met, spoken to, or had any sort of exchange with.

It’s a very ugly side of humanity.

So, once again I will be backing off social media. I don’t want or need that kind of toxic energy in my life. Especially from people I don’t know.

I’m a bit sad about this.

I really thought I had found a way to use social media in a positive way. Yes, a limited way compared to most people (I still find myself explaining to people that I don’t really do Facebook when they send me friend requests even though I have it clearly posted on my page that I don’t accept them).

Time to retreat once again into the real world.

Communicate with real people, live and in person. And online, stick to the few circles of people I can trust and that these apparently angry toxic people don’t frequent.

 

About Debbie

After spending 32 years in marketing, Debbie now spends her time blogging, teaching online courses, doing volunteer pet therapy, and encouraging others to follow a more inspired path through life.

7 comments on “Life Without Facebook (Sort of): Part 3

  1. Thanks for this article Debbie – and for the previous two on the same subject which I have now read.
    I can totally relate to what you are saying. In my case I just feel that my energy is sucked out of me, especially now that I use FB for my business as well as for keeping in touch with friends – well it is not so much keeping in touch with them really….
    Having recently started my business I feel forced to be on FB but then I continuously feel really bad and like a failure when my business posts don’t get liked or commented on. And you are right everyone are just connecting with everyone else to sell their product or service, and it all ends up being so far from genuine as something can be. And of course I am part of the rat race – no better, no worse than anyone else.
    Maybe I will follow your lead and leave Facebook one day…. time will tell.
    Thanks again for a great article (well three of them)!
    Be well,
    Tiina

  2. Tiina,
    It is interesting how we feel we MUST be on Facebook if we have a business. We feel like everyone is there so we must be there, too. I’m finding that not being there hasn’t affected my business. The fear of leaving was much greater than the actual effect of leaving. And, in fact,I am much more productive in my business since leaving Facebook. It’s amazing how much time it sucks!

    All my best,
    Debbie

  3. Pingback: Life Without Facebook: Part 2

  4. Hi Debbie, I just came across your website after a google search on this topic. I realise your article is a couple of years old so I would love to know if you still are off of Facebook? I am a new and young entrepreneur in the health and wellness industry and I strive to live a healthy life physically, mentally and emotionally. I find FB extremely draining, discouraging and a huge waste of my time which is obviously not good for my health. For all of the reasons you mentioned in your 3 articles I also don’t like FB. Unfortunately, so far ALL but one of my clients have found me through FB marketing so I am afraid to leave it. That being said, I have not done much marketing offline to attract clients in other ways. My email list is also small at this point. I have no concerns leaving Facebook as far as keeping in touch with my friends and family. Like you said there are other ways to communicate and I can go to the blogs I enjoy rather than following them on FB. It is my followers and my FB groups that I network with I am concerned about leaving. I feel that I would have to completely get rid of FB including my own business page or it will continue to be a life drainer for me. If I choose to remove myself from FB do you have any encouragement for a new business owner such as myself?
    Thank you!

  5. Hi Christie,
    It’s crazy isn’t it how we feel like we HAVE to be there? After a few years away I got to a point where I decided to go back in a very limited way. I use FB personally to stay in touch with my dog friends (my dogs are involved in dog sports and pet therapy), but not even personal friends or family. And mostly only because that’s how my dog friends communicate. I use my business FB page to share my content (blog posts, podcasts, videos) because I know that’s where a lot of my audience hangs out, even if I don’t. So while I’ve found a way that it works for me, I would also have to say that I don’t think my business suffered when I was off social media, at least not in terms of sales. Of course now I can boast (if I wanted to, which I don’t!) that I have thousands of followers and friends, and while it definitely gets my online content more exposure, I don’t see it generating a lot of sales. I’m sure it contributes to my email list growth and eventually some of those people buy my courses, but I think I’d probably be just fine without it.

    If social media doesn’t feel good to you, I’d suggest taking a hiatus like I did and focusing on other ways to market. See what happens. Encourage your FB followers to subscribe to your email list or your blog RSS feed (or podcast feed or whatever content you’re sharing) and let them know THAT’S where they can find you and connect with you. If you choose to leave FB let them know and tell they why. I found I got a lot of support from people who totally got it, and many shared that they wished they could leave it too, but they were afraid. I find that nuts. Do what feels good and adds value to your life, and leave the rest out. There are too many ways to market offline and online to feel like you HAVE to do any one thing, just because everyone else is doing it.

    And who knows, like me, you may find after some time away, there is a way it works for you. Or, you may find you don’t miss it at all, and neither does your business. My advice – follow your heart!

  6. Thanks for your reply Debbie, I really appreciate your story and insights. My heart says to take a few months off FB to focus on building my business without relying on FB followers. I don’t “own” my FB page and at anytime it could be removed and I’d be hooped if that’s all I depended on! After I establish my business more I will see how I feel about my FB presence.

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