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Disconnect from Technology and Reconnect with Family Members

(Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images)

Today’s technology helps us connect with people all across the globe and, yet, it also causes us to disconnect with each other.  Back in October, I wrote about how today’s technology appears to be stressing people out as well as disconnecting them from one another.  Too much technology in our lives can interfere with personal human interaction.   I was reminded of this the other evening when the four of us went out to eat.

For many years Jenny and I have seen examples of families being out together; yet, not really together because their technology interfered with their interaction.  We always swore that we would not let that happen with our family.  And low and behold, it was happening at that moment.  There we were, Jenny, Emily, Elliot and me, sitting at a restaurant table.  Instead of engaging in family interaction, our two children were engrossed in their phones, playing games or doing whatever.  Jenny and I had been talking with each other and had not noticed what was going on next to us.

A chill ran down my spine, as well as an immediate burst of frustration and fear.  Immediately I told both of them to put the phones away and not to bring them back out until we left the restaurant.  I was so sadly disappointed in myself for not noticing and for allowing the situation to develop.  We do not engage in our electronic devices while we eat.  That time is our interaction time!

Then just this morning, I read an article about this very topic.  The subject matter was about “cutting the cord.”  It reminded me of being more diligent and alert during our “family time” and keeping the technology away.  The article even mentioned some strategies, such as piling up all phones away from the table (and people) so that no one is even tempted to look at them.  It mentioned making a pledge together to put technology away for an hour per day, just so we make sure to “be together.”  I guess you could call it a “tech timeout!”

I firmly believe that it’s very important for us all to have time each day when we “disconnect,” for each other and for our own mental health, just like I previously wrote.  Without time for ourselves and each other (in person and face-to-face), we can be surrounded by virtual people and yet be forever alone.

I encourage you to take a couple of minutes to watch the video below.  It’s not in English, but it doesn’t need to be.  You’ll get the message…

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