Talking Face to Face Versus Facebook

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Confession: I used to spend an inordinate amount of time on Facebook. But I didn’t even realize when too much was enough–until my wife said, “David, you’re on your phone ALL the time!” So I checked my usage. Sure enough, I spent an average of 2 hours 20 minutes every day–on Facebook alone!

I ended up deactivating, and then deleting my account.

Yes, there were withdrawal symptoms, but after about a week I stopped constantly checking my phone for those little red numbers. FOMO was eclipsed by FOMU–Fear Of Messing Up.

Being off Facebook has been a mixed blessing. We’ve missed a few funerals; yep, it was on Facebook, and we don’t take the newspaper. It’s also harder to keep up with some of our family members.

But here’s something on the positive side: being off FB has encouraged me to have more face to face conversations–especially with people who aren’t exactly like me.

And when someone is right in front of you, you benefit from tone of voice, facial expressions, and other non-verbal cues to help prevent misunderstandings. Plus, unlike when I was on social media, I’m not as tempted to quickly (and often inappropriately) respond to a perceived slight.

The Original Social Validation Feedback Loop

The Christian love (agape) found in the early church was deep and purposeful. (Acts 2:42-47; 4:32-37). Such mutual benevolent concern is hard to find in cyberspace, where interactions are often superficial and impulsive.

When Christ Himself was asked about the greatest commandment, He responded, Love God first, and your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:28-31) Loving your neighbor was not a recent rule, (Leviticus 19:18) but by the time of the New Testament, most folks held a rather narrow view. Jesus challenges this thought with the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37).

He makes it crystal clear that any person in need is our neighbor.

On FB, my ‘neighbors’ tended to be people who were a lot like me; there’s nothing wrong with that, but it felt like an echo chamber. It just wasn’t a good place for me to try to live by the Golden Rule (Matthew 7:12).

I simply share my story, and am not judging you. Facebook took up too much of my life, so I quit. Perhaps you’re stronger and can handle it.

God’s best to you.


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37 responses to “Talking Face to Face Versus Facebook”

  1. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you for your interaction. Blessings!

    Like

  2. willedare Avatar

    You are wise to remove FB from your life. I agree that the WordPress community tends to be much more respectful and welcoming. And I agree that “when someone is right in front of you, you benefit from tone of voice, facial expressions, and other non-verbal cues to help prevent misunderstandings.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Angie.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Angie Avatar

    Great point!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Agreed. Even with emojis and constant exclamation points it’s hard to know what someone’s really thinking. That’s for reading and commenting.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Tina Avatar

    I have a Facebook account, but the only thing I use it for now is to share my blog posts. I don’t enjoy Facebook. I find more and more I need to hear people’s voices and see their faces. I think the pandemic is pushing this a little more. I find it more difficult to let down my walls face to face, but at the same time I want those connections. God is working on it… pushing me out of my comfort zone. Good post David. It is definitely more difficult to get a feel for a person through social media. There is so much room for assumptions. Too much.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. davidsdailydose Avatar

    You certainly have more will power than me! FB just kept drawing me in, no matter how much I resisted.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Matcha Avatar

    I gave up on Facebook about a decade ago. It was the best thing I ever did. Why would we want to share so much information with everyone?

    I do still have my account active, but I post maybe once a year. I just keep it open so I can advertise my blog… on a page I manage. Gotta stay anonymous 🤫

    Liked by 2 people

  9. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Actually, Betty, as I confessed in another comment, I spend quite a bit of time on WP tending to my blog. Maybe I simply switched one sticky platform for another?
    But WP doesn’t feel like FB—I’ve not seen as much negativity and scandal. Anyway, thank you for the interaction. Blessings.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Betty Avatar

    Interesting post, David. I do think we have to be very careful when using FB and other social media because it is so easy for these things to rearrange our priorities without us even realizing it. I have made many positive connections with others with online platforms, but I agree. It is something to use in a careful and limited way.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. davidsdailydose Avatar

    That’s me,too— just a blog on WP. I don’t know, maybe I miss some engagement from not being on FB, Instagram and Twitter. So be it.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. scribelady Avatar
    scribelady

    David,
    I tried FB three times, because a lot of writers’ groups are there, but deleted my account all three times. FB to me is “creepy”; even though I put very little personal info. there, it still listed groups to join very close to where I live–and I wondered, how did it know that? I didn’t need that type of anxiety, so deleted my account and don’t plan to go back. I have a blog on WordPress, but that’s it. I’m much happier that way.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. DeborahMarie Avatar
    DeborahMarie

    We are living proof that you can live a happy and productive life without FB😂

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Jeffrey H. King Avatar

    HA! Yeah, I just try to keep my reality nice!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. davidsdailydose Avatar

    You’re welcome, Jeffrey. Thanks for reading and commenting. I suppose virtual reality is preferred by a growing number these days, since actual reality pretty much stinks.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Jeffrey H. King Avatar

    Really enjoyed this, David! I stopped spending time on my FB account. I still have it but rarely get on it; maybe just to check up on what someone’s up to, but I rarely communicate through it if ever. I realized it was a self-feedback loop and not healthy. I dropped cable TV years ago too. We’re happier without all that. Unfortunately, too many people are (I think) overly concerned with COVID, so seeing friends is almost impossible these days. *sigh* Thank you for a good read!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Ladysag77 Avatar

    My pleasure, always🙏

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Island Traveler Avatar

    Thanks . WP helped me way back in Texas & now here in California. God bless.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Understood and agreed. I’ve spent quite a bit of time on WP these days, but it’s not like before on FB. I’ve met so many really cool, positive people—people like you! God Bless.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Island Traveler Avatar

    Great post. I deleted my FB too , & today IG. I’m keeping WP however, it’s the only social media that honestly I think is really real & truly helpful especially with the pandemic .

    Liked by 2 people

  21. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I agree. Talking face to face is harder to do these days—due to the pandemic—but definitely worth the effort. Thank you for reading and commenting. God Bless.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. My Life in Our Father's World Avatar

    I love spending time in face-to-face conversation. It is so important to have that connection!!

    Liked by 2 people

  23. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Agreed. We’ve lost the personal touch. It’s frustrating sometimes when my teacher friends and church friends say, “I saw on Facebook…,”. but I usually just smile and say nothing. That you for your thoughts. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I hadn’t thought of it, but you are right, our generation didn’t grow up with all these screens. I too like to have more control of how I interact with tech. Thank you for your thoughts. Blessings.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. Ladysag77 Avatar

    In the beginning of this year I felt similarly and I too deactivated my account. I stick to here and my Instagram accounts to sharing my writing. I too find myself on my phone a lot less and that’s a good thing. I’ve connected back to both people and nature, as my shamanic practice calls for….balance. I feel much happier and in control of my life. You and I didn’t grow up with these gadgets and I for one didn’t like the way it was interrupting me constantly. I also turn off all notifications on my phone from apps. Great post David!

    Liked by 2 people

  26. DeborahMarie Avatar
    DeborahMarie

    I’m not on FB, but many of my friends are. They know more about what goes on in my son’s life than I do😂. It’s my belief that FB is not the place to post “important” family information, in lieu of making a personal contact to family and friends when someone has died or is sick. What a shock to have to find out on FB! Before FB, you picked up the phone or drove across town to bear the bad news. It’s really not that hard to do😊

    Liked by 2 people

  27. Alan Kearns Avatar

    There are probably quite a few Christian bloggers been banned by FB, but there is no one keeping tabs on it. The thing about my ban is I know it came from a complaint on a “Christian” group. These are worrying times indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you for your thoughts, brother. You are the second Christian blogger that I know who has been censored by Facebook. I find this particularly troubling due to the fact that they claim to be an open forum for all viewpoints. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Alan Kearns Avatar

    This is a great and very timely post David. I have been a Facebook junkie for a while, but in recent months I have been pulling back from it. I too spent lots of time on FB at one point, even under the guise of just reading Christian pages. The thing about that is that many posts are negative or downright evil from deceivers, even on Christian pages. A motivator was when my devotional blog was labelled as “hate speech ” and banned by Facebook. Nowadays I hardly look at it. I keep it at present purely for contact with friends. But I wouldn’t be surprised if someday I dump it completely.
    God bless you my brother in Christ.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I appreciate your thoughts, CG. Many in today’s world feel they simply MUST be on social media to keep from missing out. The problem is, real people (in the same room) are missing them. I hope you have a blessed day too, brother.

    Liked by 2 people

  31. CG Thelen Avatar

    Thanks for this post. I deleted my Facebook account years ago. My wife stopped using it about a year ago. Too much toxic stuff on it. We too have missed events posted only on Facebook which is a bit frustrating. I find the WordPress community more positive, thoughtful and inspiring. Have a blessed day.

    Liked by 2 people

  32. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Yes, indeed. Sometimes we just need to unplug and put down anything with a screen. It’s not easy to do these days, but definitely worth it. Thank you for reading and commenting.

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Don't Lose Hope Avatar

    I think reading – what’s happening in the news, or on Facebook – can stop us doing, and being actively and positively involved in the lives of others.

    Liked by 2 people

  34. davidsdailydose Avatar

    You’re welcome, Pete. Thank you for your thoughts. God’s best to you in your journey—digital and otherwise.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Exactly! The app developers certainly know how to draw people in. Frankly, I’m a bit of an obsessed Word Press user now, but it’s not as bad as before—I hope. Blessings.

    Liked by 2 people

  36. pastorpete51 Avatar

    So funny that you are posting this just when I am walking through some of the same. I am not yet up for deleting the account but have finally gone as far as putting a stop to the app on my phone (It can’t be deleted). We’ve been listening to a series by Pastor Rick Warren about being a Disciple in the Digital age and I really wanted to take some concrete step to detox. Thanks for sharing. Have a blessed week-end

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Perth Girl Avatar

    Social media can definitely suck us in on endless scrolling and trivial arguments.
    I personally prefer to have minimal social media presence using it only for getting notifications and reminders about events at church and such.
    Thanks for sharing David.

    Liked by 3 people

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