Help For When You Need To Take A Technology Break

Help For When You Need To Take A Technology Break | Twin Cities Moms Blog

The sunglasses and wide-brimmed hat covered my eyes while I sat there and cried about my mistakes. The sand that clung to my legs sparkled in the Caribbean sun and there next to me on the plastic chair was the book that brought a scary reality to light. Hands Free Mama.

I’d carried that book all over the place, and while the cover was worn from all the travels, I’d never actually read the whole thing. I did attempt it once and was caught in an embarrassing position by my husband. I held the book in the car yet held my cell phone inside it checking messages while we drove home from a vacation. He gave me a side-eye at one point that clearly said, “You’re doing it wrong.”

Yet, here I was, miles away from home and my children, on an island, finally reading it. I realized that I was afraid to read it.

I was afraid of the reality that I would face.

I was afraid to answer for my actions.

I was afraid to put down my phone and take a break.

Something started during that vacation that allowed me to take my first step to back away from my phone, laptop and social media.

It wasn’t easy coming to the realization that I had made some very regretful trades over the past few years with my time and energy on technology. But there’s hope, and it’s never is too late to take a break and reassess what value technology is playing in your life. I’m not perfect and I’ve fallen back into technology overload several times, but these are tips for helping you stay on track with your goals and values for technology.

Help For When You Need To Take A Technology Break

  • Start with a book about technology and cell phone use. Hands Free Mama was a good fit for me because she shares her very real and personal story of being a mother who overused technology.
  • When you need to take a technology break, ask yourself what are you doing on there right now? What are you missing in your life while you are on your phone? How could you be spending your time?
  • Set time amounts and outlining online activities. Kristen Brown, a public speaker on leadership, suggested to me that I should write down how I am going to spend my time online before I even go online. Setting time limits and outlines keep me from endlessly scrolling Facebook and Instagram.
  • Set up your own boundaries and rules for your family. For example, phones and technology are not allowed at meal time. No checking texts or emails in the car unless the car is off. No phones in bed or near the bed.
  • Acknowledge your ego and find a balance. There is an element of social media that feeds the ego. Is social media use the only way that you feel loved and supported? What are those other ways? Try and reconnect to those supports.
  • Find a buddy who will also take technology breaks with you. One of my friends organized a group of friends to stay off technology after 7 pm for one week. It was great to have the support and reconnect with the activities I didn’t have time for when I was using technology at night.
  • Remember that getting off track happens. When it happens, just start at the beginning again.

Technology breaks can be helpful for many reasons and look differently in each family and situation. For me, the technology breaks have meant more quality time with my kids and husband, sleeping better, and reconnecting with passions and interests. And the reality is that sometimes I get swallowed up again by technology and I know for my own health I need to step back. It is never too late to take control over what you value in life.

Help For When You Need To Take A Technology Break | Twin Cities Moms Blog

{Photo credit: Sarah Hudson Photography}

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