Digital Detoxing: How To Disconnect As A Family
You only have to look around you to notice that we’re spending more time staring at a screen than ever before. Did you know that the average Australian adult now spends the equivalent of one day per week online? While there are myriad benefits of embracing modern technology, there’s a lot to be said for digital detoxing and taking time out. Here are some tips to help you disconnect as a family.
How to disconnect: practical tips for modern-day families
We live in a world where technology plays an increasingly integral role in the way we work, communicate and learn. There are endless advantages of being tech-savvy, but there are also benefits of stepping back and enjoying a bit of time without any flashing lights, beeping noises and notifications. It’s not always easy to switch off when you’re a parent in the 21st century, but hopefully, these steps will help.
Many of us are fans of lists and apps that enable us to plan our schedules and micro-manage our time. If you find that you’re rushed off your feet, but you still spend hours scrolling or liking comments or photos every week, start setting aside downtime. Book in an hour each evening or a weekend afternoon to put phones down, turn the TV off and take a step back from the digital world. During that window of half an hour, an hour or maybe even half a day, don’t check your emails, encourage your kids to put their phones down and enjoy the time you have together. If you can get into a routine, you should find it much easier to go without phones and tablets.
Find other ways to spend your time
Many of us admit to using our phones because we’re bored or we’re trying to fill time. Instead of reaching for your phone every time you’re on the way to work, you’re waiting to pick your children up after school, or you’re hanging out at home at the end of the day, find other ways to spend your time. Read a book, listen to music, chat, do puzzles, go for a walk and stretch your legs. Sometimes, you might want to read your emails or respond to a message from a friend, but try and move away from your phones becoming the go-to source of entertainment.
Designate no-phone zones
Technology can bring us together, but it can also jeopardise communication, especially within the family home. If you’re familiar with the image of everybody sitting around the dinner table tapping away or staring at the screen in front of them, now is the time to make changes. Designating no-phone zones is a fantastic way to encourage your children to spend more time with you and ensuring you spend quality time together each day. Many families now limit usage or even ban phones at the kitchen table and in bedrooms, for example.
Set a good example
Our children learn from us, and they pick up on behavioural traits and patterns all the time. If you urge your kids not to devote all their free time to video games or social media, make sure you do the same. If your children see you on your phone all the time, this will become the norm to them, and they’re likely to follow suit.
Digital detoxing is something you can do as a family. If screens and flashing lights are taking over your home, now is the time to down tools and spend more quality time together.