Technology brings many benefits to our lives. But excessive screen time can create a flat, one-dimensional existence. We were made for the rich, three-dimensional experience of relationship with God and one another. So, while technology is great for some types of communication, it is no substitute for real-world, face-to-face connection.
The goal is not just less screen time, but more real connection. Start two simple strategies to shift the balance in your family life.
Choose several “tech-free zones” where the family agrees to put away devices in order to enhance real-life connection. Select from the following zones or come up with your own. Consider placing a basket in each location for everyone to drop their devices as they enter.
1. Mealtime: Include the table at home and in restaurants so that every mealtime can foster face-to-face conversation.
2. Drive Time: Rather than everyone retreating into his or her device, use the time driving together to connect, pray for the day ahead or hear about everyone’s high and low point during the day. (Some exceptions may apply, such as limited use during long distance travel, etc.)
3. Date Time: Give your undivided attention to your spouse during dates. It is ok if you need to check your phone to be sure the sitter is not trying to reach you, but then go right back to enjoying time together.
<h3>REAL CONNECTION IDEAS</h3>
While reducing tech time, increase the time you spend together as a couple, a family or with friends. Choose from the following ideas or come up with your own for making memories and conversation.
• Play a board game together
• Cook a meal together
• Play a sport together
• Go for a walk or bike ride together
• Read a book aloud to the children as they turn pages
• Do a service project together
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