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6 Ways You’re Wasting Time on Facebook


How much time are you wasting on Facebook each day? According to this NY Times article the average user spends 50 minutes on Facebook and Instagram per day.

Moms, we have to stop wasting time on Facebook!

That’s time we could be reading to our children, taking a bubble bath, playing a game with our family, meditating or praying, meal planning, talking to our partners, pursing creative interests . . . you get the idea.

Because I use Facebook for business purposes, I have to log on to Facebook most days. And, of course, I do enjoy scrolling through my news feed when I have spare time and seeing what friends and family are up to.

But, Facebook offers me so much more to see than just my business groups and updates from my friends.  When I log in, even if I’m only there for business, all of the non-business distractions are there.

One of the main goals of Our Small Hours is to help moms make every hour count, but I was letting Facebook rob me of my precious time.

Facebook Distractions Are Hard to Ignore

Early this year, I discovered six ways I was wasting time on Facebook. At first I resolved to simply ignore the distractions, get straight to my purpose for being on Facebook and get out as soon as I was done.

But, I’m human. *sigh*

So, I started looking for ways to stop wasting time on Facebook and here’s what I found my biggest time wasters to be:

  • Using Facebook on my phone
  • Having chat turned on
  • Being distracted by the Trending Now feature
  • Following too many friends
  • Keeping the news ticker bar visible
  • Not managing my groups effectively

I’m proud to say that I’m no longer wasting time on these six things.  Now, Facebook works for me – in minimal time.

How to Stop Wasting Time on Facebook

Stop Using Facebook on Your Phone

Earlier this year Facebook for Android updated and stopped playing nicely with my smart phone. I had to reset my phone to fix it (I lost everything), but when I reinstalled Facebook the problems started again. I tried twice to reset my phone and reinstall Facebook, but each time it thoroughly jacked up my phone <– that’s the technical terminology.

So, I stopped using Facebook on my phone. That meant I had to stop using Messenger, too. (Though, now you can use just Messenger. I still don’t.)

I saved so much time by only using Facebook on my PC. I haven’t missed using it on my phone at all. Now I only log onto Facebook for business purposes and spend a few minutes at the end of my session scrolling through my news feed – if I check my news feed at all.

How to Turn Off Chat On Facebook

There is little more frustrating to me about Facebook than getting a chat notification. When I’m on Facebook it’s for one of two reasons – business or zoning out while scrolling my news feed.

While I find the chat feature useful, I manage its distraction by turning off chat so that I don’t have to respond to messages right away. When you turn off chat, your friends can’t see that you’re currently active on Facebook. They can still send you messages, but they don’t expect you to answer right away. This allows you to respond to messages once per day or at the time that is convenient for you.

To turn off chat by following the instructions at the bottom right-hand side of your Facebook page.

How to Get Rid of Trending Now on Facebook

The Trending Now feature on Facebook offers users a quick look at the headlines of the day. Several of those headlines would suck me in every time – even if it was an article about a celebrity I’d never heard of. I’d click just to see who this person was and why they were important enough to be in the news.

Because I struggled to stop myself from clicking, I decided to get rid of the Trending Now feature all together. Unfortunately, there is no way to turn off the Trending Now feature through Facebook itself.

I used a Chrome Extension called FB Purity to remove the Trending Now feature on Facebook. Done and done.

How to Hide the News Ticker Bar on Facebook

Ah, the creepiest Facebook feature – the News Ticker Bar. That’s the feature on the far right side of your desktop screen that allows you see everything your friends are doing Facebook in real time.

Why, why, why?

But, I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it sucked me right in. When I’d see that a friend from high school commented on the post of another friend from high school who I hadn’t seen in years, I’d click over to see  what that friend had been up to. When a friend I trusted like a page about a subject I was interested in, I’d click over to check it out.

It was a big time waster and made me feel far nosier than I’m comfortable with.  So, I hid it.

To hide the Facebook News Ticker Bar, go all the way down to the bottom right side of your screen (by the search bar) and click the gear icon for Options.  Select Hide Ticker at the bottom of the options list.

How to Unfollow Your Friends on Facebook – Without Unfriending Anyone

I noticed when scrolling through my news feed that I was seeing a lot of updates from friends I wasn’t really friends with and not enough updates from friends I wanted to keep in touch with. I needed a way to see more from some friends and less(or none) from others.

Now, I’m pretty cautious about unfriending folks on Facebooks.  It’s really a last resort for me. While many of us would never notice if someone had unfriended us, some people are really sensitive about it. Luckily, Facebook has a great feature that allows you to decide whose posts will appear in your new feed – the follow/unfollow feature.

You can manage who you follow/unfollow in two ways. First, as you scroll through your news feed, you can click on the arrow at the top right of each individual friend’s post.  There is an option there to unfollow that individual friend.

Another way to manage who you’re following is to go to the left side of your screen (on your PC) under Favorites – click the gear icon beside News Feed and click Edit Preferences. Here you can select which friends or pages to see first in your feed, select friends to unfollow and even reconnect with friends you’ve unfollowed in the past. (This is great for rekindling friendship after an election year.)

How to Manage Your Favorite Groups

Groups are a huge part of the reason I’m on Facebook. I belong to several business groups and many other interest groups. Before I added certain groups to my favorites, my news feed was a free for all. I was seeing group posts that I wasn’t interested in and missing some that were vitally important to me.

I got my Facebook groups under control by adding my most important groups to my favorites. If you need to manage your Facebook groups better, go to the left side of your Facebook screen and scroll down until you see the heading GROUPS.  Click to bring up full list of all your groups. Click the gear icon on each group to select Add to Favorites.

Now, you can access your favorite groups list easily from the left sidebar.

Enjoy Your New Found Free Time

The minutes here and there spent on Facebook combined with the time spent in a full-blown distraction-induced Facebook vortex really add up. Enjoy your freedom from the Facebook time suck and remember to make every hour count!How to Stop Wasting Time on Facebook pin

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