I'm deactivating my Facebook account.
It's bittersweet. There is no denying that Facebook has allowed me to access a wealth of information about using, buying, and selling cloth diapers, installing car seats properly, connecting with local moms, being supported by others who share my passion for non-toxic living, and having access to instant feedback from others worldwide should I have a question or comment about pretty much anything imaginable, to name a few. As a wife and mom, I'm sad to say goodbye to these amazing resources. But a series of events has left me knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that it's time to say goodbye.
As a photographer, I fear I might be committing professional suicide by deactivating my Facebook account. I don't do any form of official advertising, so word of mouth and Facebook have been my best friends as I've grown my business over the past 2+ years. But having Facebook professionally is actually my bigger issue. I'm constantly comparing myself to other photographers. "Their photos always get more comments than mine" and "Their photography page has more likes than mine" are two thoughts that cross my mind and weigh on me on a daily basis. I notice friends of mine who avidly follow other photographers that I introduced them to but rarely comment on my own work, and it breaks my heart. I feel like I give, give, give to certain people I admire, trying to connect with them through comments, words of encouragement and adoration, yet am consistently met with NOTHING although I see the person I admire doing the same thing to the one that THEY admire, and in an instant my sense of self worth is being determined by what, someone who doesn't pay attention to me? And just like that, I'm back in middle school, when I hated myself because certain people didn't think I was good enough and I was, I AM utterly lost on the hopeless search for self worth within other people. Even when I have it to some degree, it's not enough. I'm looking in the wrong place.
Which leads me to my next point: I know that deactivating my Facebook account won't solve all my problems. I am fully aware that only Jesus Christ can rescue me from the woes of what it is to be sinfully human. I'm not resting my hope in Facebook (or the lack thereof) or determining to change myself, because I know those things in themselves are dead ends. I do, however, believe that by deactivating Facebook account, I will be saying "no" to a VERY big idol in my life. I realize that I'll need to fight against the temptation to replace my Facebook idol with something else, but I believe I'm taking one step in the right direction. I'm stepping out in faith. I'm choosing to trust that even though the Lord is leading me away from Facebook, which has been a major part in the growth of my photography business, if it's His will for my business to continue to thrive, it WILL happen.
I suppose this is it! It's a Wednesday afternoon, my son is napping, and I have made the decision to sign off Facebook for good by the end of the day. I'm scared, but more than that, I'm excited to see how the Lord uses this decision.
You can feel free to continue to follow my work and personal life here on my blog as I plan to continue to post a few times each week. If you want to reach me, please do so at firstname.lastname@example.org or by using the "CONTACT" form on my website. I'd like to say that I hope you'll choose to let me know what you think by sharing your comments below and by continuing to do so on future posts... but I think that kind of defeats the purpose of my trying to step away from putting my faith in everyone around me! I'm not saying you shouldn't leave comments, but if you feel led to do so, do :) Until next time, friends!