The guilt I have faced when conversing with my two children whilst cooking dinner, making a mental note of what to pack in their lunchboxes and then trying to remember the conversation I had to then find out, you were in '' autopilot mode '' and you didn't actually hear what they were saying. We miss out on finding out what our children have been doing at school and their day to day antics due to digital noise.
We are all too consumed by technology, so much that it has taken us away from communicating face to face. Access to the outside world is at our fingertips and we have a voyeuristic behaviors, checking what is happening to someone on social media instead of taking time to find out how the person next to you is feeling. I am guilty of this and have had to exercise a few rules in order to spend some quality time with the children. I'm sure you can follow these and amend them accordingly if you don't have children as the main action is to switch off from technology!
- Switching off phones from 7pm till bedtime. When the phone / iPad / laptop is switched off, there is not temptation to watch that cute cat dancing or the 3 second clip of a hilarious moment captured by someone on vine.
- Silent or interactive reading – the whole family sits down to read a book individually or together. This serves two purposes, firstly it encourages habitual reading and spending time together. Expands the mind and encourages imagination which in turn leads to creativity.
- Wednesday board session – every Wednesday we try and play a board game before bedtime. I do get the competitive bug and it is half the fun, it is interactive, fun and great way communicating and staving the need to reach for a gadget.
I've tried the above exercises in the last 3 weeks so far some have worked, the reading definitely worked. Board sessions haven't worked so far due to chaperoning kids to some activities in the evening. What do you do to cut off from the buzzing outside world? Are you facing these challenges that we cannot escape the voyeurism fed by human curiosity instinct? Do you have the ability to escape the digital noise? How do you silence the noise and find time to reflect and rest? I will find more activities to add to my list as I'm sure there are plenty that work for other people. Until next time …