Monday, September 9, 2013

Put Down Your Phone!

I don't know about you, but technology has become an addiction for me and I am on my iPhone, iPad, and computer way more than I should be!  It just recently hit me that I am missing out on simple things by being on my phone all of the time.

My 4 year old has one of our old iPhones that he plays games on.  Most of the games are educational so he plays it during quiet time or in the car.  He started carrying it around the house with him and playing games throughout the day.  This is when I realized I don't want him doing that!  He was missing out on story time that I have with the Toddlers and all of the creative playtime we do.

This made me realize that I do the same thing, but worse!  I am constantly checking my email or Facebook, or anything I can think of even though ALL of it can wait until the kids are not around.

I thought back 10 years ago.  I was 22 and I think I had a basic flip phone but relied most on my home phone.  Internet was dial-up and took forever, cell phones were for phone calls only, and taking pictures with your phone was unheard of!

I think about what I did without my phone in high school.  I had a pager that we weren't even allowed to bring onto school property without fear of being suspended, and we had to use pay phones to call the person back after they left their 'code' at the end of the number so you knew who it was!  I remember running across the house yelling "I got it!" to get to the phone before anybody else and caller ID was on one little thing in one room that you had to run to in order to see who it was before the answering machine picked up.

I remember having to go home to check my answering machine to see if anybody had called and trying to find my friends meant driving around to different spots that they hung out to actually look for them.

I remember I didn't get irritated when my I didn't hear from my friends because they were probably out doing something fun and didn't have access to a phone.  I didn't spend my time reading about their lives on Facebook because if I wasn't with them I had to hear about it later or see the pictures after we waited 5-7 days, after dropping them off, for them to get developed.

I know times have changed, but in an effort to get back to paying more attention to what is right in front of me and to get creative in entertaining the kids, I made a pact with Z to only use our phones or computers during quiet time, breaks, or after bedtime (for me).

This is not going to be an easy task and I have forced myself at least 5 times already today to put the phone down and walk away.  If it is that important than whoever needs me can call or text me instead of emailing or Facebook, right?

Next time you catch yourself getting irritated with your kids for interrupting you while you are preoccupied with technology, put your phone down and walk away.

That's my plan, what's yours?

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