5 Ways I am Breaking Up with Screens

Yes, I am breaking up with them- alas, not always and forever {even though at times I wish we could} because I do recognize that they can serve the most wonderful purposes- my ability to write this blog being one.

That being said, I am more aware than ever that they can impede on what's most important to me... I've heard at least 2 sermons recently with crazy statistics and studies about what technology, screen time, likes/buzzes/beeps do to you... the way all of that can quickly raise your dopamine levels- the same way drugs and other substances do... And, how increased screen time limits your ability to empathize and truly connect with others.

I know for me, and many of my clients, we are aware of how quickly time is taken from us as we scroll and also how disengaged we are from our people when we attempt to "multi-task" by being with them, yet our mind is engaged in the screen.

If we were truly honest with ourselves it happens WAY more then we care to admit... and, in being honest with ourselves, we'd also know that we so often find "comfort inside the screen"- leaving no REAL peace or rest.

5 Ways I am Breaking Up with Screens

And, I am saying NO to this now... I am saying no to looking back on my life and feeling like too much of it was eaten up by the screen instead of significant, life-giving interactions, opportunities and the like.

In addition to hearing the 2 sermons, I've spoken with others about it and then I heard Andy Crouch, speak at the Q 2017 Conference 2 weeks ago. He is the author of The Tech Wise-Family and is so insightful. 

So, after getting "hit in the face" with all of this- if you will- I started really being mindful of my use, as well as praying and looking into some practical ways to put limits on my screen use.

Here are the 5 Ways I am Breaking Up with Screens {and my family is a good bit too}:

1. We are going old-school and using an alarm clock- we actually just got this one and are starting to introduce it now {it's a bit of a slow introduction given current travel schedules}... This eliminates us looking at our phones first thing in the morning and seeing who has emailed, messaged, etc... we can start our days in a better frame of mind this way.  

2. We are using our actual Bibles in church versus our phones! I have done this some in the past but then in the last few years, I typically got in the habit of rushing out the door and realizing I left it behind... Now we consciously pull our things together and bring them to church... In addition to our Bible, I bring my journal... did you know that studies show that writing something out, rather than typing it, helps it stick in you brain better?! Your brain captures your writing more like a picture than it does typed lines on a word document. *If this is making you think about wanting a new Bible- check out this one- we recently purchased and LOVE it! 

3. Social media free weekends- can I get an amen?! This has been SOOOOOOO good... I truly wish we could mandate that everyone everywhere take the weekends off of social media {please don't send me any hate mail}. I just want to say that this has been so good for my heart and mind and my people... I want to give them my best and that is simply not happening when I have a screen in my hands!

4. We are not taking our phones into the bedroom {unless one of us is traveling and therefore we need it for emergencies}. We are focusing on conversation, reading and/or watching a show together, instead of mindlessly scrolling and realizing that we shut our eyes after barely engaging with one another.

5. We are not bringing our phones with us to meals/date nights. This one is more of a "continue to", which is I term I use with clients when we are evaluating their level of fulfillment in their various "life accounts". If their level of fulfillment is high in a certain life account, then typically what's happening in that area would be items that they want to continue doing versus consider doing or start doing. 

And, for us this is one that's been working really well so we plan to continue... no screens at the table during family dinners and no screens on date night- unless of course we want to google something or are listening to music :) 

I will say, given how much we value breaking up with the screen, we are interested in purchasing a light phone... have you heard of these yet? 

5 Ways I am Breaking Up with Screens

The creator of these was at Q and we had the opportunity to hear him speak about how he came up with this idea... it's essentially created to be used as little as possible and be an extension of your smart phone. So, it uses the same number as your existing phone, allowing you to leave it behind and only have means to be reached via phone if/when there's an emergency... how wonderful?!

So, do share- how are you breaking up with screens these days?! 

If you're sure that you want to be your best for your people, be present and be in the moment, I would encourage you to pick at least one of the above ways to infuse less "screen comfort" and more true rest and peace in your life.

I'll tell you that from the first few steps I've taken to date, I've not missed it a bit and I am also more aware than ever that I don't want my people to ever feel like my screen takes precedence over them! 

Can't wait to hear from you- love to each of you!

5 Ways I am Breaking Up with Screens