Extreme Makeover: Facebook Edition--Image of a Facebook wall.

Extreme Makeover: Facebook Edition (How to make your feed more fun [and safe]).

So you want your Facebook experience to be better. Awesome, in fact….

For starters, make sure your bio is up-to-date. To do this,

  • Go to the “Intro” area beneath your Facebook profile picture.
  • Update both areas: the “Intro” field and the list below it which includes where you live, where you work, where you went to school, etc.. Do this by clicking on the little pencil icons.
  • Ladies, make sure to include your maiden and married name, if applicable. This will help friends from way-back-when find you.

BFFs or not so much…

And now, a really important and easy (and yet, time-consuming) way to improve your Facebook feed is to update and organize your friend list. To do this:

  • Go to your Facebook wall.
  • On the white toolbar under your cover photo (the horizontal image), click on “Friends,” there should be a number beside the word.
  • Starting with the first person, hover your cursor over the box that says “Friends” beside each person’s profile picture.
  • Choose the category that best fits each relationship: “Close Friends” or “Acquaintance.” Repeat this process with each friend.
  • Get even more specific by creating groups such as high school friends, college, hobby, location, church, etc.. This is important, do this!)

Now, go out to the shed for your axe.

Next, consider unfriending individuals if:

  • They’ve deactivated their account.
  • They haven’t posted a new status (or engaged with anyone) since 2017.
  • You have NO idea who they are.
  • They’ve passed away. This is totally optional. I am still Facebook friends with a number of folks who have passed.

This unfriending step is optional; however, it WILL clean up your feed. Those folks who never “like,” never share, never comment, and never post anything are basically “dead weight” for your feed.

To get MORE of what you want in your Facebook feed:

  • A TON of people are copying and pasting that one “This is how you improve your Facebook feed…” message as their status. Facebook corporate says this is a lie. The best way to INSTANTLY jazz up your feed is to go to your newsfeed (Get there by clicking on the blue “F” in a white box in the upper left corner of your Facebook page. Then click on the three little gray dots beside “News Feed” in the light blue side bar on the left of your page. Then select “Most Recent.” Trust me when I say you will need to do this multiple times a day. It’s worth it though. If you don’t do this, you’ll see the same old posts over and over.
  • Select the people you want to see most in your Facebook feed. To do this, click on the tiny down arrow all the way right in the blue tool bar at the top of your Facebook wall. Then click on “Newsfeed Preference.” Click on “Prioritize who to see first.” FYI, I’m pretty sure you can only pick 30.
  • On a regular basis, make sure you visit, LIKE, and COMMENT on other people’s walls. And SHARE posts that you really enjoy. Like my blog posts! These actions teach Facebook what kinds of things you want/like to see in your feed.

Some other things you can do:

  • SHARE at least three posts—from someone else’s feed—about topics you’re interested in. If you like recipes, share CleanFoodCrush posts. Do you enjoy pictures of your friends’ kids? “Like” a bunch of their prom pictures. If you’re super-duper into sewing, share posts from Creating Ashley.
  • On a regular basis, post new statuses that mention the topics you’re interested in: ie. current events, national politics, writing, pets. Your favorite topics should start appearing on your feed more frequently.
  • When people engage with a status you post, make sure you comment on their comments.
  • To get even more engagement on your feed, post a question. I find that people LOVE to give their opinions or share their experiences.
  • Be diverse in your posts. Do not post on the same topic all the time. Refrain from posting selfies constantly. Resist the urge to air your political opinions 24-7. Do not post dozens of memes. Instead, mix it up. Post a question. Share a quirky fact. Put up a meme. Show a picture of your pet prairie dogs. Ask another question. Review a movie. Compose a haiku. Do not be boring!

To get LESS of what you despise:

  • “Hide” things you DON’T want to see (ie. celebrity gossip, abused animal stories [with pictures], sponsored ads for black leggings). As you start to hide certain posts, you teach Facebook to show you fewer of those things.
  • To “hide” items, click on the three dots to the right of the post. Select the option that applies. For instance, “Hide post” tells Facebook you want to “see fewer posts like this.”
  • You can “snooze” a person for 30 days if their rants or multiple posts a day get on your nerves.
  • You can “unfollow” people but still stay friends. Later, when you want to see what they’re up to, you can undo the action.
  • Block people if they’ve become persona non grata to you (I had to do the blocking thing in this situation.). To do this, click on the down arrow in the blue toolbar at the top of your wall. Click on “Settings.” Click on “Blocking” and follow the directions given. You can undo this action later if you two make amends.

Definitely do this one thing. Unless it’s your birthday.

Once upon a time, the husband of a friend of mine posted an image of a guy sitting on a commode. On MY Facebook wall. Not cool. Not cool at all. Want to make sure this never happens to you?

  • Click on the down arrow in the dark blue toolbar at the top of your wall.
  • Scroll down and click “Settings.”
  • On the list on the left side of the page, click on “Timeline and Tagging.” The first question is, “Who can post on my timeline?” Click “Only me.” No pooping man on your page ever again. Hooray!

Don’t leave that page yet. In the third section, you may want to turn ON “Review posts you’re tagged in before the post appears on your timeline.” I LOVE this option. Because if the post includes a “U-G-L-Y, you ain’t got no alibi” photo of me, I don’t want it on my page.

You can also review the middle section (on “Tagging”) and decide what you want to do there.

Suggestion: On your birthday, change the “who can post on your timeline” setting from “only me” to “friends.” So you can feel supremely loved by all your Facebook friends!

Private vs. Public

Make some of your posts “Public.” Like the funny ones you write. And the helpful ones, too. On the flip-side, when your posts have private details, make those posts for “Friends.”

To change this setting, after you write your new status/post, in the shaded area below, there’s a box that includes options to send the post to your “Newsfeed” or “Your Story.” On the right you have the option to make your post “Public” or for “Friends.” Pick your preference there.

As you introduce some public statuses, you’ll hopefully notice your posts getting more attention from a wider audience. And don’t worry, this is not a one-and-done. You can select the privacy setting for each post.

For Safety’s Sake

Consider activating security features like two-factor authentication. People who do this generally don’t get hacked. Don’t care? You will when you get hacked. To set this up:

  • Click on the down arrow in the blue tool bar at the top of your Facebook page.
  • Click on “Settings.”
  • In the list on the left, select “Security and Login.”
  • Scroll down and click on two-factor authentication, the fourth information field.

You’re welcome.

Friending people you meet out in the world.

If you meet someone at a business or social function and you want to friend them on Facebook, don’t just send them a friend request. Send them a message noting how you met them.

To do this:

  • In the bottom right corner of their “cover photo,” click on “Message.” It has a little lightning bolt thingy beside it.
  • Type a brief reminder message.
  • Click the blue airplane icon to send it.

Note: When I get a friend request from someone I do NOT know, I will not accept it without a message like this. Are you listening, all you men in other countries who send me friend requests? Your fancy uniform (or doctor’s smock and stethoscope) and/or pictures of cute children do not impress me at all.

I just learned this really cool Facebook trick.

This one is going to improve your feed also. Remember up top when I suggested you sort people into lists? Every now and then visit those lists you made to see  the people in your “high school” category or “church” category or “loves cats” category.

How to visit your lists:

  • From your newsfeed, in the left column, click on “Explore.”
  • Click on “Friend List.” If you don’t see “Friend List,” click on “See More” and your list should show up, click on it to see a list of all the categories you made.
  • Click on each label one by one to see what folks in each category are up to. This amusing action is also supposed to improve your newsfeed.

And now, the last two steps to Facebook awesomeness…

  • Print out this blog post.
  • Open up your Facebook wall and get to work.

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