The Value Of Spending Time With Your Family Without Devices by Cindy Stradling CSL. CPC

Look around you and see all the technology and communication we use today. Our lives are increasingly intertwined with our “always plugged in” culture, from smartphones and smart watches to laptops and even smart glasses. However, we need to focus on the importance of spending quality time with our families and disconnecting from our devices before it is too late.

Fostering Strong Relationships

Spending quality time with family members helps build and maintain strong relationships. When we turn off our devices, we are more present and interactive with the people around us. We have deeper conversations, better understanding, and more meaningful connections. Family activities such as playing board games, cooking meals together, or having a conversation over dinner, help to strengthen bonds and promote a sense of connection.

Enhancing Mental Health

Constantly being online can lead to feelings of stress, anxiety, and burnout. Making a point of disconnecting for periods of time throughout the day or the week is essential for our mental well-being.

Enjoying face-to-face conversations and activities with kids, partners, and friends provides emotional connection and reduces feelings of isolation. It allows us to unwind, recharge, and gain a fresh perspective, while also helping us to slow down and be mindful of life.

Creating Lasting Memories

The time spent with the family doing positive activities is always memorable. Disconnecting from devices allows us to be fully present in these moments, creating lasting memories we can fondly remember. Whether it’s a family vacation, a weekend outing, or an evening at home, these experiences are invaluable. They help create a sense of continuity and shared history that makes a family special.

Practical Tips for Disconnecting

Establishing specific guidelines around disconnecting and time without devices that are uniform for the whole family is always the best option. Talk to your family and:

  • Set guidelines – determine when devices are put away, such as during meals or family gatherings, and explain why this is important.
  • Create device-free spaces – designate certain areas in your home, like the dining room or living room, as device-free zones to encourage face-to-face interactions.
  • Plan activities – regularly schedule activities that involve all family members, such as game nights, hikes, or movie marathons, to foster connection and create shared experiences.
  • Lead by example – adults need to model healthy device usage for kids. Demonstrating the importance of disconnecting sets a positive example and encourages similar behavior.

While technology has benefits, it’s crucial to recognize the importance of disconnecting and spending quality time with our families. Making this a family effort is the best way to create meaningful time for connections and conversations.