A step-by-step how-to guide to “Unfriending” Facebook

I have been Facebook free for about 2 weeks now, and I don’t miss it. At. All. If you have a desire in this new year to reduce screen time (or would like to have a more sane election year, or not contribute to Zuck’s multi-billion dollar annual wealth increases, or one of many, many more issues), you may want to consider deleting Facebook too.

I know we all have a love-hate relationship with Facebook and there are a lot of reasons why you keep holding on. Today I’m going to deal with one issue I have heard frequently: What about all my pictures, friends list, and my creative and witty posts? That’s a lot to lose!

The answer to that is save you data! You can download your data! Yes, all of it! Friends. Groups. Comments. Posts. Pages. Events. Photos and videos. The list goes on. Here is a quick and easy step-by-step guide:

Once you are ready to delete you account (this way you have all the right-up-to-the-last-minute data), click on the down arrow in the upper right hand corner of your page. Scroll down and click on Settings.

Screen Shot A Go to Settings

Then click on Your Facebook Information which will bring you to the screen below. Click on Download Your Information.

Screen Shot 2 Download Your Information

The next step is to Request Copy of your files. Choose All of my data (you can always delete from the file later) and HTML (so it looks like what you’re used to). For the best quality photos, it’s recommended that you go with Media Quality: High. Now click on Create File. 

Screen Shot 3 Select All

Once the file is ready you will get a message (and an email) letting you know it can now be downloaded on to your Mac or PC. Click on Download and select a location on your computer where it can be easily found and accessed.

Screen Shot 4 request

Your file will look like this. And when you click on each of the headings, all you “stuff” will be there looking very similar to the way it did on Facebook (the list goes on, this is just the first couple categories).

Screen Shot 2020-01-09 at 12.59.25 PM

Now you are ready to delete your account. Go back to the Your Facebook Information page. Click on Deactivation and Deletion at the bottom of the list which will bring you to this page with two choices. Deactivate Account is not permanent, allows you to reactive and also continue to use messenger. But if you’re really committed, go for Permanently Delete Account as I did! The caveat here is to NOT log on to Facebook (even accidentally) for 30 days, or your account will be reactivated (even when choosing the permanent option). So, if you’re serious, delete the Facebook app from all your devices and DO NOT click on any Facebook links. ANY. For 30 days.

Screen Shot 5 permanently delete account

So congratulations! You’re done with Facebook. Now what? In the next blog post, we’ll discuss the answers to these pressing questions:

  • How will I know what’s going on with my friends?
  • How can I let people know about all the important things going on in my life?
  • How can I share my inspirational workout or race results and get the recognition I deserve?
  • Where will I get my news?
  • How will I build my business or stay connected to my professional network?