When I look at my life I see so many distractions. There are so many things that somehow jump to the top of my priority list without really being all that important. Do I spend more time on my phone than I do with my family? Am I more concerned about what’s happening to the people on the screen in front of me than I am with what’s happening to the people right next to me?
I’ve been quietly longing for the days before smart phones, Netflix, and social media. Somehow, with them all right in front of me I have trouble living without them. My phone is close by me at all times. The Internet is just a touch away when I’m bored. When I wake up the first thing I do is check my phone. The only way I know how to relax is with my favorite show on in the background. There is something wrong with this picture.
Technology is a beautiful thing, don’t get me wrong. It has enhanced our culture, our faith, and our connections in so many ways. But it also has this way of controlling our every step, demanding our attention. And sometimes, I feel powerless against it.
I’ve decided to take some action! I no longer want to be a slave to my iPhone. I want to live a life with technology, not a life of technology. So I have come up with these few ways that we can limit our use of technology and make room for some other things.
- Take a weekend away from technology. This seemed like the most insane idea ever when I first heard about it, but it is completely empowering. I had to delete some apps from my phone for the weekend to limit the temptation, but I was able to come out on the other side. This isn’t something you need to do every weekend either, just every so often to shake things up a bit. You may even find yourself wanting to take the weekend break!
- Delete Social Media Apps From Your Phone. This is crazy, right? How are we supposed to connect with the entire Universe if we don’t have Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest all right at our fingertips at every moment? I promise you, it can be done. You can delete the ones that you find yourself spending a lot of time on. I can spend hours scrolling through Facebook mindlessly, so that one had to go.
- Limit Your Technology Time. This one I haven’t quite mastered yet. As a writer, my computer is constantly open, so clicking over to the Internet is such a temptation. I also have a habit of needing the TV on in the background. The only thing that does the trick is to mentally limit my time using technology. It helps to plan other activities instead, like a walk, or a baking project. I also have found that having a “no technology after 10 o’clock” rule works wonders at limiting my time in cyberspace.
- Put The Phone Away. My phone is always on my person. I carry it around the house like it’s my child, and dig it out of my purse whenever I have stopped moving. It’s getting ridiculous, and so I’ve decided it’s time to put the phone away. Turn the volume on high if you need to and check it if anyone calls or texts, but other than that, just put it away.
- Don’t Post So Much. I have found that the more I put on the Internet, the more I rely on the Internet to keep me feeling happy, important, and occupied. Share your beautiful life, but don’t miss the now moments looking for the perfect Instagram photo opportunity, or spend an entire family get-together live tweeting your Great Aunt Merrell. Keep the posts to a minimum and you will have no reason to be constantly checking up on how many “likes” you got.
Even as adults sometimes we need a few guidelines, and technology has the ability to swallow us whole. We can get caught up in the world on the other side of the screen and miss out on the world that we’re living in right now. Following a few of these tips might be just the thing you need to avoid those technology binges and to get more out of your life.
Try some of them out, and comment below to let me know how it goes!