Back in February, I walked away from Facebook. I deactivated my account and didn’t look back!
In July, I made a slow return. My grandfather passed away and I found myself logging on to read the heartfelt comments left on my and my family member’s posts about my beloved grandpa.
It did not take long for the rabbit-hole trip to personal devastation to take place.
I spent one evening mindlessly scrolling for about thirty minutes (it’s such a time vacuum!). I could feel the beginnings of an internal struggle with comparison. The next morning, I sat and cried for what felt like hours. Those thirty minutes of scrolling caused me to think negative thoughts undoing the past six month’s worth of working on building back my confidence!
I believed I had made friendships, only to see all of the things I wasn’t invited to on Facebook.* I felt rejected. Excluded. Not worthy of an invitation.
I saw THEIR posts and only thought of MYSELF.
Facebook brings out my pride. I scroll and only think of myself.
Her post boasting of her child’s achievements causes me to question my parenting. Her selfies (likely edited to make her look flawless and gorgeous, at least this is what I tell myself) make me feel fat and frumpy. Her social outings make me feel excluded. It shouldn’t be all about me, but it ends up that way.
Likewise, if I’m being honest with myself, my personal posts are often carefully cultivated to create comments. Likes and comments affirm me.
He must increase, but I must decrease.
I find myself needing to take a step back from my personal Facebook page, again. I need to set limits on the amount of time I spend scrolling mindlessly.
My interactions on social media must be intentional. Jesus should be front and center. I (imperfectly) question my motivation before posting something on social media. This practice has stopped me from posting for the purpose of pleasing myself.
Maybe you have social media down. You don’t get sucked in and you don’t find yourself comparing yourself to the hundreds of “friends” who constantly update about every aspect of their lives. That’s awesome. I would love some pointers!
But, if you are like me, you experience a struggle with social media. There are many pros: connecting with loved ones far away, finding encouragement, spreading the Gospel, and staying in touch with the happenings at your kid’s school or in the neighborhood (because everything happens now on Facebook). But, there are also the cons: falling down a rabbit-hole of comparison, FOMO, feeling excluded, and so on.**
Here’s a tip. Remind yourself that her post is NOT about you.
And always remember that your worth is found in Jesus. Sweet Jesus. Not online.
*I’m a vocal introvert. People I meet know this about me. So even though I felt excluded, I also KNOW that had I been invited to a social outing I would have declined. I know, it makes no sense. Welcome to my chaos!
**Nicki Koziarz has an amazing Bible study called Why Her? She uses the story of Rachel and Leah to help readers combat comparison in their own lives. I did this study with a friend and it was so, so good. That link takes you to Amazon, but feel free to check it out at any of your favorite retailers. I’m not tech-savvy enough to get any kind of kickback for your purchasing from that link!!