Five Reasons You Should Delete Friends on Facebook

Reasons People Join Facebook

Why did you originally join Facebook?

Theoretically, Facebook provides a platform to remain in contact with friends and family both far and near.
  • You always know what your besties are doing.
  • You keep up-to-date on family news.
  • You watch where life takes your old classmates.
  • You stay connected to co-workers, even if you change jobs.
  • If you move away from your hometown, you can still stay in touch with the people you've known all your life.
  • When you share your own news, you have a large support network to cheer you on.
In reality, Facebook is the Diet Coke of social engagement.  You can have 3,000 friends but remain completely isolated.  People might comment on your posts, but most forget all about you once they hit like.  In this sense, Facebook is really unsocial media.

You have a core group of friends and family who use Facebook to stay close to you, but they are a small percentage of your total friend count.  The ones who truly care about you deserve your focus.

Fun Fact:  Did you know scientists have found the human brain only manages 150 friendships anyway?  It's true!  Robin Dunbar, an Anthropology professor at Oxford University, shared his findings that you can have 1,500 friends on social media, but you will only work on maintaining the same inner circle of 150.

If you haven't purged your Facebook friends list, it's time you do.  Here's how you decide who stays and who goes.

1.  Delete Friends Who Unfollow You on Facebook

Do you ever go back and look at your posts to see which friends commented or clicked an emoticon to show they heard you?

Over time, you will notice the same group of people always respond to you while others never do.  One reason for the silence may be you have been unfollowed.  This means you are still on each other's friends' lists, but they don't care enough about you to have your posts show up in their feeds.  They don't want to officially unfriend you and hurt your feelings, but if they aren't interested in your posts, why would you still want to be virtual friends?

If someone unfollows you, does it mean they are a bad person?  No.  Maybe the two of you friended each other on Facebook when you met at a party but never saw each other ever again.  Maybe the person friended you a decade ago when you worked together but then moved out-of-state.  Your connection is over.  Let them go.

Some people enter our lives for a season, and when that season is over, there's no point staying friends on Facebook, especially if you suspect they've already unfollowed you anyway.

2.  Delete Facebook Friends Whose Comments Stress You

Facebook should be a place where you let down your guard and decompress.  When you log in, you want to see memes that make you laugh, cute pictures of your BFF's kids, and get the latest scoop on those you care about most. 

If you belong to Facebook groups that support your hobbies and interests, you enjoy scrolling through those posts, too.  They take you to a happy place.

The last thing you enjoy is engaging in word wars with people who always seem to rile you.  It's not that you can't appreciate someone's right to a different opinion.  Social media, however, does not create an environment for constructive discourse and debate.  Hiding behind a computer screen, people forget there's a human reading their comments on the other side.  When you disagree on a topic, you rarely find someone on Facebook who will be gracious about it.  They harpoon you.  These days, no one agrees to disagree.  Share a different perspective that offends or angers someone, and they are out for blood--particularly on religion and politics.  

Maybe your Facebook friends are on your side, but they have tons of friends who aren't who always see your posts and never fail to attack you for your opinions.  

You don't need this.  Delete your perpetually negative friends, or the friends with too many followers who are toxic to you.  You are never going to change their minds, and they aren't going to change yours.  

Is it being close-minded not to engage in robust debate?  Not on Facebook.  Facebook is where you need to relax, have fun, and enjoy whimsy.  If you want to debate issues, Twitter is a better platform. 

The nature of Facebook lends itself to being a safe space where you can connect to like-minded people and enjoy the interaction.  If you log out and find your nerves are frayed, figure out who's responsible and ax them from your friends list.  Block them too, if necessary!

3.  Delete Nosy Facebook Friends Who Never Share Any Posts

Some of your friends are just plain nosy!  They like knowing all about you, but they never reveal anything about themselves.  

They might be nice people, but they are still a unique kind of troll.  

Facebook relationships should be give and take.  I tell you about me, and you tell me about you.  This is a fundamental principal of friendship.  

If any of your Facebook friendships are a one-way street, they should be deleted.

4.  Delete Facebook Friends Who Are Only Casual Acquaintances

One of your old classmates finds you on Facebook and sends you a friend request.  For the sake of nostalgia, you accept their request, only to realize you never interacted with them in school, and you still don't want to now.

A former co-worker finds you on Facebook and wants to be friends, even though you worked with them a lifetime ago and no longer have anything in common.  

Maybe you bump into another school mom at the park.  You are courteous and talk to her to be polite, but then she asks you to be her friend on Facebook.  

Do you really want casual acquaintances knowing all the personal details you share on Facebook?  Sure, you can control what posts they can see, but why bother with that level of maintenance?  Guard your privacy!

Comb through your friends' list and eliminate casual acquaintances who are only a step above strangers.  They don't need to know so much about you!

5.  Delete Facebook Friends Who Are Artificial

There are a lot of shallow people on Facebook.  They are the ones who paint a picture to make others think their lives are perfect, even when they are far from it. They post pictures of 20 vacations each year, brag about their kids, pretend to be happily married, and give the impression they are a friend magnet and ultra popular.

These are the friends who post 1,000 selfies each day.  They are often narcissists, so they post about every mundane occurrence because they think everyone cares.    

Shallow people typically have thousands of Facebook friends because they might be insecure and need validation.  They share so many posts each day that you wonder how they accomplish anything else in  life.  

When it comes to your true friends, you are excited to see good things happening in their lives.  You encourage them and celebrate their successes.  That is your reaction to those who are genuine.  If you nearly barf over some people's posts every time you read a new one, it's an indicator they have no substance.  Shallow, artificial friends need removed from your list.

Focus on Healthy, Authentic Facebook Friendships

It's important to remember that social media is no substitute for face-to-face interaction.  If you really care about someone, be sure to get together on a regular basis.

Real friendship is based in trust, common interests, and mutual respect, so pare down your Facebook friends list until only family and your core circle remain.  These are the people who are really in your corner.  When you encounter difficulty, they are the ones who will actually pray for and support you through the ordeal.  They aren't the ones who will write "prayers" or "hugs" and then forget about you as soon as they post.

You don't need to impress others with a profile that boasts hundreds or thousands of friends.  

You can delete friends a couple ways.  You can write a Facebook post letting your friends know you're purging your friends' list and explain your decision in a way that will cushion the blow if they don't make the cut.  You can even suggest they message you if they want to be sure to remain on your list, but that might stick you with the ones you especially want to eliminate.  The best way is to simply delete the ones you want without notification.  

If you delete the right friends, they probably won't even notice you're gone.   


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