First Day of Facebook Break Facebook diet

I feel anxious.

Today I announced on my highly trafficked Facebook wall that I will be taking a break. More on that later because it is already raising lots of things for me to fill these pages with.

In keeping with my morning routine (sans Facebook now) I sit down with my coffee and wake up to all things internet. Just saying that makes me cringe a little. Polluting my brain first thing in the morning does not sound like the ideal way to start the day. Sitting outside with a nice bowl of oatmeal (if I actually liked oatmeal) listening to the birds sounds a bit more healthy.

But anyway, I digress…

As I popped around my google reader checking up on my favorite blogs I came to a Rolling Stone update telling me that Brittney Spears is on the verge of signing a $16 million deal to be a judge on the X Factor. Now, why would my first reaction be…”Ooooooo! I need to share this with my Facebook friends”? (and see, I still told you…but not for you or me…to help raise my search engine ranking by linking to Brittney Spears.)

Am I really admitting all of this?

Why has this become normal? Why have these become the things we/I want to talk to our/my friends about, or to let them know? What the h@ll is wrong with me?

But anyway…I am not doing this because I have an addiction, although I do spend too much time on this type of junk. I am doing this because of another theory. When John Mayer quit Twitter (which, a little to my credit, I don’t follow) something he said in Rolling Stone (my other addiction interest) that stuck with me. Tweeting so much started to make his brain smaller and smaller and he couldn’t write a song.

I can relate to that. You put all the ‘good stuff’ out there in one sentence thought forms and that is the way you start to think. Why blog when you just summed everything up and shot it out on Facebook? Why explore anything deeper when you just purged it in ten words or less and continued with a larger dialog in comment boxes.

You may not get that drift right now but it has been becoming clear to me for a while. I will keep you posted and please do comment (on the blog comments, not Facebook because I won’t see them there)…I would like to see if you notice any of this in yourself and your experience with how you deal, or don’t deal with it.

6 thoughts on “First Day of Facebook Break

  1. Judi Rubin

    I totally get your theory and that of the RS article. However, as a 70 yr old retired Geropsychologist and self professed “deep thinker,” I believe that the thought process we use to shrink our ideas to pithy and often misconstrued
    twitter and FB commentary may be just as valuable to our brain cell health (think forming new neurons) as deep thought.

    In fact, it might even be better because it’s a new, unique process and our brains thrive and grow with exploration and new challenges like learning to play an instrument or learning a new language.

    Thus, I don’t believe we will shrink our brains as happens with various forms of dementia but over long periods of time twittering and friending, the novelty may wear off and we may need yet another new and Stimulating challenge to keep our brains fed and happy – think creativity!

    Our Beadmaking skills grow with time and impact our brain cells as we explore and create from within. So don’t worry about your brain. Worry more about time lost from creativity.

    I quit FB cold turkey last September and even though I sometimes miss some information (which by some miracle seems to find its way to me eventually) I don’t miss the masses of mindless chatter.

    With all my best wishes for a day of discovery and delight,

    Judi Rubin A/K/A “Grammy Glass”

  2. Denny

    I feel also that it may be more that so much time is spent on Facebook or on the computer/ipod/iphone/ipad etc. that the time to be creative is reduced to an amount which is insufficient for the creative process. I myself don’t visit Facebook more than once a month and tgen only to check in with my nieces and nephews. Bye bye Facebook. Hello torch. Bead on.

  3. marcy

    Hi Lori,
    My 27 year old son has taken a break from FB and he doesn’t miss it. I think whatever makes you feel best, you should do.

    As for shrinking brain, to me, FB is no worse than watching most of what is on tv – and often I see and hear things that are going on in my beadmaking world because of my friends on FB. Also, if I’m not traveling, I’m working mostly in my studio. I enjoy easily connecting with my friends- (don’t have to keep each person’s email) and often use FB as a think tank…”so, who knows about such and such an item?” So personally, I will remain. I am not a huge fan of twitter, nor tend to follow it much. Pinterest could keep me engrossed for hours. I think everything in moderation. (except I am kind of addicted to Words with Friends- 🙂

  4. lorigreenberg Post author

    Thanks for the thoughtful responses everyone! Gonna have to do a bit more thinking on the “medium is the message” one because my brain has shrunken and I don’t grasp that. ;o)

    Seriously…while I don’t really think that our brains will shrink (indeed it has seemed to keep up my ‘cleverness’ by formulating thoughts into sound bites that entertain) I do think all of those factors that y’all mention contribute to a loss of depth in thinking…at least in my case. The time sink being the big one as well as not taking the time to think deeper.

    Judi, from one self-professed deep thinker to another…even if something like Facebook may feel like it’s shrinking my thinking (I like that rhyme), it is impossible to escape the thinking.

    Now I just need to examine how much Bejeweled is poisoning my brain. ;o)

  5. Shelley McLaughlin

    We just got rid of television at our house for much the same reason…and we don’t miss it all. I spend more time on the torch or stringing or photographing or anything else that moves me! There is a book called The Shallows that talks about the effects of technology on brain development, and it isn’t all that positive. Our short and long term memories are being affecting, just for example. If you are a reader, you might want to check it out.

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