These dang smartphones, y’all. I love them. I love that we can easily FaceTime loved ones with the push of a button, that I can order something I need for the girls instantly (#amazonprimemom). But as I think we’re all very aware of, it comes with it’s share of negatives. We’re so connected that we miss the connections that are right in front of our faces. But I’m honestly not here to climb up on a soapbox – there’s enough of that on the web and it’s just not really my speed. You know what you struggle with, and I have faith in you that you know what needs to change. I’m here to welcome you into a detox that I personally am already embarking upon this week. The hope and heart behind it is to actually detox, in a way that opens me up to what the Lord is doing in my day to day life but doesn’t cut me off from technology completely (because…2017).
Give yourself a break from the non-stop media consumption that leaves you feel like your head is spinning. Take a second to pick and choose what’s worth consuming, opinions you actually care about. Be okay with missing out on something for a week (and maybe longer, that’d be cool, right?). Put down the phone and the laptop and create and be present. That’s the heart behind this detox.
Clear out the junk, both literally and figuratively. You have to be careful not to let this take up your entire day, okay? But scroll through your Facebook friends and do some housecleaning, hide people or even unfriend them. Do the same with Instagram and Twitter. Use Unroll.me to clear out your inbox (this is so satisfying, y’all!) Do a once over of your device and clear out any apps you don’t ever use.
I will encourage you to add one subscription to your inbox, Rachel Hollis’ Last 90 Days, which starts today! It’s not your typical “challenge” in that it’s pretty holistically focused. Listen to Rachel explain it here, and sign up here. Shoot me a message or comment if you decide to do it so we can encourage one another!
Take the morning off your phone. Set a reasonable but also challenging time (mine is 10 am) to not use your phone outside of answering text messages and phone calls. This means not rolling over and instantly doing your social media/email run through before your feet even hit the floor. (Side note: I’ve actually started implementing this a lot of mornings, and it’s so good. There’s nothing like a healthy dose of opinions and idealistic images to start your day, right? Ugh.)
Only read/watch three things on your devices all day. This is going to be especially hard for you Facebook scrollers. This means only three blog posts, news articles, quirky FB videos, etc. You’ll find you have to be super selective of what you’re taking in on this day, and I’m already convicted by how much crap I know I’m going to pass up that I would normally click into, hah!
Get out of the house, and leave your phone behind. If you have the budget and babysitter, go on a date night (your spouse can obviously bring their for emergencies sake). If this week isn’t a good week for date night, go on a family walk or have a picnic in your yard, and leave your phone inside the entire time.
Go media free from dinner on. Plug your devices in, turn off the TV, eat dinner as a family, and then spend time together without technology. Play a game, have conversation, get it on, whatever strikes your fancy this Friday night – just do it without media.
Take the entire day off of media. If you feel like you’ll be tempted, take the apps off of your phone Friday night. You’ll go the entire day without looking at or posting to social media, and I promise you will not miss anything life changing. If you get notifications from news outlets, turn those off too (if something catastrophic happens, your spouse can clue you in).
Everything’s been leading to this day – phone free day. Yup. You’re going to take the entire day off of your phone. Let close family and friends know that you’ll be phone less all day Sunday, and give them your spouse’s (or who ever you’ll be with’s) contact information so they can get in touch in case of emergency. Turn off your phone, put it in a drawer, and enjoy the inevitable freedom that you’ll encounter having a whole entire day without your phone.
Optional: make it a full media free day. Don’t watch TV or iPads either!
That’s the week. I personally am really excited about embarking on this alongside Rachel’s 90 Day Challenge, and feel like it will be a good kickstart to the last three months of the year, most often the craziest. I put together a handy-dandy, simplified graphic to help you remember what the challenge for every day is.