Facebook. Everyone’s least favourite social media platform yet the one most of us can’t bear to drag ourselves away from. What is it about Facebook that has such a hold over us? Perhaps is the nostalgia surrounding it (at least for me) or the fact that we’re all nosy and keen to spy on what our friends from school who we never talk to are doing. But the fact is, Facebook can seriously suck at times.

Facebook friends

I used to be OBSESSED with Facebook.

I was one of those annoying teenagers, updating her status ever 10 minutes and giving people a run through of my day. I joined every stupid group under the sun. I “poked” everyone I was friends with. I was that girl who posted various incoherent drunk statuses during every night out, only to regret it the next day.

Honestly, as much as a cherish some of the memories that pop up on my “on this day” feature on Facebook, a small part of me could literally die from how cringe I used to be. 

Nowadays, I don’t use Facebook very much.

I have a Facebook page for my blog and I’m a member of a few really great Blogger Opportunities Facebook groups where I get collaborations and work from. So they’re really helpful and a great reason to stay on Facebook.

But the “social” side of the social media platform?

That’s pretty much gone down the drain for me. 

I like people’s photos and statuses occasionally and share my own photos to my “2021” album but that’s about it. And I do the latter more so for myself, so I have memories and photos all in one place to look back on.

facebook friends

My Facebook friends list has ebbed and flowed over the years too. A good number of years ago, I started to get into the habit of whittling it down at the end of every year in my hope for that “fresh start” feeling. I don’t go out of my way to add people on Facebook anymore either.

Actually the last person I added was one of my boyfriend’s work mates who I added completely by accident. Cringe.

Facebook can be an extremely miserable and triggering place if you let it. I’ve certainly had moments scrolling through Facebook where I’ve come off the app feeling 10 times worse than I was before I went on it. Which is the reason for this post.

Because I can’t imagine I’m alone in that feeling.

Our online spaces need de-cluttering just as much as our physical space. And social media platforms definitely shouldn’t go under the radar. There’s a ton of reasons why you should de-clutter your friends on Facebook and here are a few of them.

8 reasons to de-clutter your Facebook friends:

You don’t talk to them anymore

Pretty simple and straight-forward one to start with. If you don’t talk to them, engage with them, interact with them in any way, then that’s a pretty slam-dunk reason to remove them from your friend’s list. If you don’t ever think about talking to them and it’s been years, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll want to.

They’re inactive

Over the years, lot of people choose to remove themselves from Facebook yet they might still show up on your friend’s list. These people are just unnecessary clutter because they’re not even active, so these people definitely should go!

You never liked them in the first place

Okay let’s be honest. None of us like EVERYONE on our Facebook friends list. Perhaps we added them at the time because they were a member of a group we hung around with but we never *really* liked them, we just tolerated them. If you’ve moved on and you still don’t really like them, get rid of them.

They’re triggering to you

This is mean a ton of things and I don’t necessarily mean triggering in an intentional way. There are a ton of things that people could do which can trigger others without meaning to. Posting baby photos, talking about weddings or just a certain person in general being triggering because of a memory. If that’s the case, don’t feel bad about removing them.

They only talk to you when they need something

I hate these people but unfortunately, we all have them or have had someone like this in our lives. If there’s something like this for you on your friends list, I’d highly recommend you removing them. It’ll make you feel better and it’ll also send the message to them that you’re not willing to put up with that crap anymore.

They unintentionally make you feel bad about yourself

Similarly to the triggering point I made but some people just make you feel bad about yourself don’t they? I had to un-follow someone on Instagram who made my self-esteem plummet and as someone that already suffers from low self esteem, I couldn’t take it anymore. It wasn’t anything they did, I just needed to do it for my own peace of mind.

You can’t remember who they are

Look. No judgment. I 100% can’t remember everyone on my Facebook friends list either. Sometimes when I’m doing my de-clutters, I’ll actively say “huh?” because I just can’t pin-point who they were. No shame. Just remove them. Chances are they don’t remember you either.

They’re from a part of your life you need to let go of

And finally, one that I think a lot of people will be able to relate to, especially if you’ve been on Facebook since you were a teenager, like I have. We go through a lot of seasons and phases of life. Not all of them good. And chances are you build up interactions with people over that time. If they’re from a period of your life you’ve let go or need to let go – then it’s okay to let them go too.

I’m sure there are many more reasons why you might want to or need to de-clutter your Facebook friends but I hope these suggestions help you the next time you come around to doing it. Remember, you should never feel guilty for mental health first when it comes to social media!

How often do you de-clutter your Facebook friends? Do you use any of these suggestions to help you narrow it down? Let me know in the comments!

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  1. At peak I had about 400 ‘friends’ – now at about 130, and muted a dozen more who I don’t want to remove outright because it won’t look right with close networks.

    I’ve mostly removed people because I don’t talk to them or their annoying.

    I’ve also removed a bulk from a phase of my life when I moved on with – when I split up with my ex we’d shared the same group of Friends, who I stopped seeing after the split. It came too painful to see them continue with the old life I’d never be part of again.

  2. Love this so much! I don’t use Facebook very much but I do find that theres lots of information that gets spread that inaccurate and I have to fact check my mom 1000 times a day haha I’m not afraid to mute or block anyone if they trigger me so that’s a great point you made that I relate to. Thanks for sharing babe x

    Lynn | https://www.lynnmumbingmejia.com

  3. I did a facebook detox after reading this and feel so much better! I found people on there that I haven’t spoken to in years because they just got lost in the noise of everyone else’s voices.

  4. This speaks to me so much Jenny! I’m definitely super inactive on Facebook since leaving the highschool/university part of my life and basically use it as I need to for work. I’ve definitely decluttered my facebook many times – and will look to your tips next time I sit down to do it again! Thanks for sharing.

  5. amazing post, jenny! I try to keep my friends list small. but even with a few hundred people, i def need to go through it again. i’m still friends with people from highschool who i never talk to or friendships that turned out to be bad. out of sight out of mind. 🙂

  6. One of the commenters above wrote that this is a very ‘thought-provoking post’. It is a great post for so many reasons. Unfortunately, there are things that some people post that do make you ‘cringe’. I tend to simply skip over these posts and try to overlook them. I have friends whose posts I really want to see…they tend to be the down to earth types who are not obsessed with themselves. I guess you have a choice…you can ignore the posts of the attention-seekers or you could delete them. (I tend to ignore them, but you really make a good case here…)

  7. Oof, I feel every word of this! I used to post every single thing to FB back in about 2007 when I first joined. Lots of cringey things that felt OK to share on a platform that only friends my own age were on. Then FB became huge and everyone’s now on there – older relatives, younger relatives, colleagues, people you haven’t seen in years who pop up out of nowhere!

    I’ve stopped using it for anything other than my blog page and occasional happy birthdays to people I don’t keep in touch with any other way. What with all the data leaks and privacy issues, it just triggers my anxiety these days. I love your idea of having a clear-out of friends and making things simpler on there. Thank you for the tips on how to choose who to unfriend – it’s good to have a sort of checklist to help with making those decisions! X

  8. Facebook makes me sad, actually. I don’t have any real friends on there anymore. I’m only on there to share links to my blog posts. I do miss the old days.

  9. Like you Jenny, I used to be obsessed with Facebook when I first signed up and couldn’t stop scrolling through on my laptop! I love these ways to declutter your Facebook friends, there’s no point in being friends with someone you no longer keep in contact with! x

    Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk

  10. I declutter my FB friends fairly often. I feel like I mostly use facebook to join groups on topics I’m interested in or for networking purposes now.

  11. I love decluttering my Facebook! I regularly go through and remove people, remove myself from groups and unlike pages. As others have said, I like to keep up to date with friends and family on Facebook and use it for blogging groups. Once I stopped following certain pages I found my feed to be a lot more friendly and less trigging xxx

  12. I used to be obsessed with Facebook as a teenager as well as my early 20’s. I stopped using it when I started nursing school. Now that I’m done school, I still haven’t returned to FB. I would be sad if people deleted me because I’m inactive but it’s a perfectly valid reason. I’m finding that WhatsApp is not enough for me to keep up with extended family so I’m seriously debating whether or not to reopen FB which I have been putting off all year.

      1. I used to have more than one FB account. One was private which I used for hobbies and online connections. The other was for extended family and friends. It didn’t work out when it started overlapping too much with my real account and in the end, I removed the hobby account. As private as I tried to keep it, people did eventually find out about it. I used to run several admin FB pages, which I ended up leaving when I left FB to take a long hiatus.

  13. These are great! I do a cull of my Facebook friends once a year and then I also delete the app and take a week off completely. Honestly there are sometimes loads of people on there who I only ever met once or can’t even remember!

  14. I found myself nodding at all of your points here, Jenny. TBH, I hate Facebook but I feel I need to keep it going – think I’m going to have a cull though because what’s the point of seeing things in my feed that don’t resonate with me anymore, you’re right! x

  15. I used to post so much on Facebook, it was so embarrasing! – my sister told me off for spamming her feed 🤣 I deleted that account but then had to create one for all the uni group chats. I mainly use it to keep up with family and a couple of friends. I also have created a page for my blog to look for opportunities. Love the tips, I did the same for Insta too x

  16. I did this not long ago but I really should do it again, and pages you no longer are interested in, and maybe even groups. It’s easily to accumulate so much crap you don’t really vibe with anymore.

  17. I only use Facebook these days to see what family are up to, and for the occasional drama. I think it’s great to have a declutter of any social media following from time to time! Removing people that trigger you or and just damn irritating is so satisfying!

  18. I decluttered my friends list in college because I was obessed with Facebook & I even reached the friend limit…now it’s just family & friends, but I do need to remove deactivated accounts since it’s been a while. I also only really use Facebook to talk to my mom & for the groups.

  19. I so so agree with this. I’ve decluttered my friends list a number of times and should probably use this as a reminder to do it again. I think it’s super important to unfriend people that are triggering or remind you of a bad time in life. It isn’t worth holding onto those people and having those reminders.

  20. This was a really thought provoking post. I do actually declutter my digital space, and I haven’t for some time now. You have quite a few good points there. I’m certainly going to consider this. Thanks for sharing! x

  21. Omg I actually got notifications the other day from “memories” that just displayed all my old statuses and I cringed so hard. I will be honest I don’t scroll or go on Facebook at all. The only reason I still have it is because 2 of my friends won’t get WhatsApp so use messenger otherwise it would be deleted! My boyfriend deleted his years ago now and I just don’t feel it has the same feeling that it did when we were young and updating statuses all the time 😂 Also I have tried deleting some people that I NEVER speak to and they just keep trying to re add me? Like I don’t speak or hang out with you leave me be 🤣 Great post! Xx

  22. Yes, yes and yes to all of these! I barely use Facebook anymore – it just didn’t really work for me – but I definitely think it’s time for a decluttering, there are so many people I’m “friends” with who I actually can’t stand! Thanks for sharing x

  23. I love this post. I hate Facebook, I think it’s more toxic than twitter, I find people I’ve known for years have fairly problematic opinions (especially during the pandemic) I’m quite good at deleting. I do post a lot but would get rid if it wasn’t for my job or this blog x

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