First, you should know the difference between deactivating and deleting a Facebook account. Deleting the account means you can never reactivate it and you will no longer be able to retrieve anything you've posted including pictures and videos. This is pretty much the nuclear option. You essentially will be completely wiped from Facebook.
Deactivating an account is essentially still there, but not accessible. It can be reactivated when/if you chose and your content will be preserved. If you are having a bad Facebook day and just want to take a "time out" from Facebook, this is the much more desirable option.
How to Deactivate Your Facebook Account:
- Click the account menu all the way to the right in the blue Facebook header bar
- Select Settings
- Click Security
- Choose Deactivate your account then follow the steps to confirm
How to Delete Your Facebook Account:
Please note, Facebook account deletion can take up to 90 days to fully take effect.
Image credit: Sammynetbook via flickr