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Why I Deleted My Facebook and Blocked My Personal Instagram Followers

This is a guest post by Hannah Hargrove.  If you are looking to post a guest post on this blog, with a link back to your website, please contact me at submissions@facebookdetox.org.

Life has a way of passing us by.  Day after day I realize that I get older and miss out on a ton of opportunities in life because I am busy doing things that do not matter at all in life.  Some of those things are sitting around, staring at the wall, and others are mindlessly wasting time scrolling through Facebook and Instagram.

One day I woke up and found myself back on social media, scrolling away, and suddenly it hit me, like a lightbulb.  I have to quit this.  My iPhone screentime app told me that I was spending a huge chunk of my day on social media (Facebook and Instagram) and I knew that my life was just rushing by.  It was a depressing realization, but I knew that I had power over what I would do next.

I came to Facebook Detox after I did a web search on how to give up social media.  I read many other articles on the subject, but finding a whole website devoted to social media addiction was EXACTLY what I was looking for!  I could not believe it!  Someone else felt just like I did!  I realized that I needed to act fast.  As they say, "there is no time like the present."  

Of course, I wish I could say that it was easy.  I wish I could say I deleted my profile, never logged back on, and got rid of the apps on my phone.  I would have loved that to be my story, but the truth is, it was a lot different than that.  After only one day of deactivating I could not stand being away.  I had a real and intense fear of missing out.  Maybe I made a rash decision, I told myself.  Maybe I can just cut back a bit.  

I went back and spent enough time on both sites to make up for the day that I missed, and then some.  At first, it felt good.  I told myself that there was no reason to leave social media and that I could control myself.  The truth was, I found that I could not, and that bothered me.  It seemed that others were controlling themselves.  I thought maybe if I could go a while without posting I would at least look like I was in control.  Yet, I missed posting, and when I started posting again, it felt cathartic.  I started sharing everything once again.  The foods I was eating, the places I was going, the thoughts I was having, even the inner stuff that nobody should ever share.  It was all out there, and it felt kind of good--at first.  Then I realized that nobody was really reading anything that I wrote.  I felt ignored as I compared my posts with my friends.  

Facebook was turning me into a monster, so I turned back to Instagram.  I found that I could spend hours scrolling through the feed of my many profiles.  I found myself comparing myself with others and longing for some of the places I was seeing in my feed.  I found myself craving certain foods and lives just by looking at the images that passed me by.  

A few weeks passed and I remembered this site.  I came back and read some more and thought to myself, I am a wreck.  I looked at my life and saw a person who had so many dreams and desires, yet was getting nothing at all done because I was addicted to social media.  I needed a way out.  

I decided that I had to take desperate measures.  I started deleting EVERYTHING on my Facebook page.  I knew that I would not make it 30 days before reactivating, so I went through my photo albums and started deleting them all, one by one.  I got rid of posts, memories, and everything that I worked on.  I basically took my Facebook back to factory settings, where there was nothing at all left.  Eat that Mark Zuckerberg!  Eat that!

Facebook Detox bookThen I went to my Instagram.  I started blocking all my friends.  Everyone who I knew was blocked.  I decided that I would keep my pictures there, private, to look back on.  But, as to show off my life to the world, that has to end!  Mark Zuckerberg wants us all to be hooked to his drug, but we don't have to let him.  We don't have to wait 30 days to get our profiles removed.  I took matters into my own hand, and while it was hard at first (I wondered, what have I done?), I started to feel good about it.  My former want to return is gone.  I thought about it a couple of times and came to the conclusion that I have nothing to return to.  

Now when I wake up in the morning I read, exercise, drink water or get going with my day.  I am now writing guest posts for websites and thinking about starting my own up again!  Life is great, and it just took me taking matters into my own hands.  You can do it, too!  My next step is reading the book Facebook Detox and learning all I can about the negative psychological aspects of Facebook and Instagram so I never go back!  


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