• Patrick McAndrew

To Delete or Not To Delete?

I’ve gone back and forth many a time regarding whether or not to delete my social media. A lot of people do it and claim that it was one of the best decisions that they’ve ever made. As I talk the talk on the impact that this kind of technology has on the way we build relationships today, it makes me wonder whether or not I walk the walk.

With all things, it is best to practice moderation. I’ve been on Facebook for just about 12 years (that’s insane!) and, usually, I don’t find myself endlessly scrolling for long periods of time looking for something to catch my attention. Facebook has been a great outlet to keep in touch with friends, plan occasional outings, as well as share photos throughout the years. And, given my 12-year tenure, sometimes it is fun to go back a reminisce on some of the photos from way back. Facebook has become a virtual, public photo album of sorts.

It’s important to try and not attach our self-worth to what is going on in the social media world. This is a big reason why I don’t post too often. If I did, I have no doubt my mind would be on the hunt for recognition and validation. This isn’t to say this happens to everyone who shares posts regularly on Facebook, but it does happen to many.

Speaking from my experience on Facebook alone (I’ve never had an Instagram and was on Twitter for a hot second), so much of my communication is tied into Facebook. It’s a great medium for planning and communicating in an engaging way. So, if this was removed from my life, how much of “life” would I be missing out on? Or would I be living life more fully? This is a paradoxical question in our digital age.

Because of this, I have always had Facebook has a means to communicate, but not necessarily to live my life on. If you see me in the company of others, especially when at a friend’s house, at dinner, or at an event of some kind, I can guarantee that you will not see me on Facebook. But if I’m alone checking emails, Facebook is one of the various message platforms that I check out regularly to discover anything of importance.

Most people may think I abhor social media, but it’s quite the opposite. Social media is an amazing way to interact and keep in touch. What I don’t like is the control that social media can have over us without us even realizing it, when we would rather scroll through our feed instead of catch up with a friend, or dig for likes instead of learning something new.

Social media is great for a quick glance, however superficial, at the world, while being an easy and convenient way to plan events and stay in touch with friends. Though I often preach its negative impacts, I likely won’t be deleting it any time soon. The question is whether or not I have the courage to let go of my digital profile for good.

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