Why I decided to mass delete my Facebook friends

When it was the start of the year, we talked about our new year wishes.

Other than doing well in my studies, I want to make more friends. And being an avid social media user, I have more than 600 “friends” on Facebook.

But it was in the past. As of today, the number has changed.

Drastic change!

Yes. You read it right. Only 148 friends. It was 602 when it was January 1. And there’s 454 of them gone. Forever.

So what happened to my account? Was my account hacked and the hacker deleted a lot of friends for me? Or did my parents make me unfriending my acquaintances in school and other unnecessary accounts?

No. I unfriended a lot of people myself, one by one without hesitation.

It was a painful decision to make but I have to do it. It’s not that kind of “new year, new changes” thing that I’ll procrastinate and not do. Rather, it was a wise arrangement when I look back.

It was a hard choice indeed. However, there are certainly grounds behind my actions.

The first reason was relatively simple. I felt that I don’t need a lot of friends on Facebook.

I realised that most of my contacts are rendered “useless” since, in reality, I talk to just only around 15 to 20 of them. Then I questioned myself the reason to have such a number of so-called “online friends”.

Also, I wish to clean up my thoughts as I felt that I was being stuffed with a lot of unnecessary information on FB. I started to blame myself for doing so and concluded the saga inside my mind with the move.

To the second point. I have discovered the true meaning of real friends. It’s not about how many friends you made, but how well you know them.

I remember that what a friend of mine told me and let’s call her Carmen (not her real name).

When I asked her the reasons why she isn’t active on FB as I met her last July, she said, “I want to know people who’ll be good to me and the ones who won’t do it behind a mask. That’s why I don’t feel like using Facebook”.

Her mentality impacted (and inspired) me in doing this kind of action. After that talk, I know that “partners are here to know each other well”.

Numbers displayed on Facebook are just a mere indicator of “how many online mates you’ve made”. It doesn’t show that how many companions you’ll talk to in real life. Let alone asking them out to have dinner and chat with each other.

Finally, I started to realise who are the important people in my journey.

Just because I have 602 friends on the Internet doesn’t mean that all of them will support me when I’m having a hard time in real life.

That’s why the ones who remained to be my Facebook friends are either my relatives, teachers or friends who are influential to my way of life.

So to sum up, I was determined to unfriend people on Facebook was that I wanted to:

  1. Reshuffle the contents of my feed.
  2. Remove the “phonies” from my experience on FB.
  3. Be online friends with only the real-life individuals who are extraordinary and remarkable in my lifetime.

And here are my criteria in unfriending people on FB. One would be unfriended if they didn’t:

  • Talk to me in (or more than) 12 months prior the unfriending action.
  • Interact with my contents (e.g. give reactions or comment on my posts) from the start of our “friendship”.

It took me about an hour to scroll through my friendsprofile and at the same time, decide who to unfriend.

I know. It’s a bit harsh, unnecessary and time-consuming, but it’s always nice to get this kind of things off my chest.

After all, I’m glad that I have done the complicated job and this is something I’ll plan to do from time to time.

Anyway, thank you for taking the time to read this. If you have anything to ask, let me know in the comments.


P.S. The story was originally posted by Alfred Yip on Quora as a blog post on Quora.

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