Here is the scene from my kitchen table a number of weeks ago…
Baby boy is fast asleep and hubby and I are having a nice quiet dinner.
For some reason or another we are discussing how mealtime was always a very sacred family time for each of us growing up. A time for the family to connect, communicate, and just be together.
Sitting at the table as a family was and is important to us.
We speak of how we want to pass this on to Arjen.
As we are chatting away I notice that both our iPhones are sitting on the table buzzing, beeping, tweeting, and purring. It’s almost as if they have their own place setting at the table – our two “iChildren”.
Each of us has, at least once, picked our phones up to either answer a message, see who’s calling, browse pictures…
This is when I realize that we need to get our act together as parents.
If sitting at the table for the duration of a meal without distraction is so important to us as parents – how can we possibly expect this of our child if WE can’t even seem to manage it?!
Something has to change. NOW – before little eyes learn.
We need to start consciously CHOOSING to be fully present in the life that is happening right before our eyes.
Just for a brief moment we must let the world of TV, e-mail, text, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, candy crush, bejewelled, etc., take a back seat to the world that is actually happening.
We must UNPLUG.
For me this has been an easy ritual.
I am an introvert. Any chance I have to abandon the world outside my doors is AOK with me.
Every day I consciously choose to unplug for at least 20 minutes.
Together, Scott and I have begun unplugging for an hour during the dinner hour.
I won’t lie – we don’t do it every day but I am hoping that we soon will. That it will become automatic.
The benefits are HUGE and immediate.
Deeper relationships, meaningful conversation, developed imagination, increased relaxation,contentment, joy…
What can you do instead of aimlessly wander Pinterest, Face-stalk perfect strangers, or watch that episode of Friends (again)???…
go for a walk
sit on the porch with a drink
go outside and talk to your neighbour
talk to your spouse/child/room-mate
get on the ground and play with your kids
Connect with the REAL world. It’s right in front of you.
I encourage both you and I to turn off the TV, close the laptop, power down the phone…
Life is waiting.