UNplugged for 24 hours
Every week or so, I will “unplug” for 24 hours. By that I mean that I don’t go on the internet or play games, I put my phone down and actually walk away from it. Did you just pull your phone closer to you? That is a sure sign you need to unplug all the more.
Why would I do such a crazy thing? Am I insane!? Possibly, but that’s a story for another day. I unplug to relax, to get other things done. To enjoy the silence. To be fully present – for real life.
There is nothing in the world that cannot wait one day.
How do I know what’s going on? I don’t. Nor do I need to. The news is depressing and repetitive. Facebook will still be there tomorrow. If I miss something on social media, so be it. With my screens put away I might actually be inspired from real life.
What if someone needs to reach me? Anyone who needs me in an emergency, knows how to reach me. That is no different whether I am plugged in or not.
The idea of unplugging came to me last year while I was recovering from a bout of depression. One day I felt completely overwhelmed and needed a vacation. Well, that wasn’t happening so thought about what CAN I do to come down. I decided to hermit for a day. Didn’t look at any screens, no gadgets, no games, no texting, nothing. It was glorious.
I got out a pen and paper and brainstormed. The ideas that came to me were amazing. Some usable most not. But it felt so good to get them out of my head.
A few months later, the internet connection died inexplicably on a Thursday evening. I thought I just had to reboot the router and by the time I called someone to fix it, there were no appointments left until Monday. Sweet pandas! No internet for FOUR days! What on earth were we going to do with ourselves? Have the Best Weekend Ever, as it turned out.
We went outside, did you know there is tons of fun stuff out there!? My daughter Gigi and I went over to the park and chatted for hours, then came home and played games together. We read lots too. Our kids are only little for such a short time, put your phone down and go play with them - without a gadget.
After that, I decided to implement this on a regular basis because it is just so beneficial to your mind, body and soul. Here are the four main ways I unplug:
1. Domestic Diva Domination
To do this, Unplug. Tunes. Cold beverage. In that order. This one I do a weekend Gigi is at her dad’s – deep clean the house and cook and bake. I sleep in, you know, to have maximum energy (read: lazy bum), have a kick-ass breakfast, turn the tunes UP, and crack a beer. Sadly, this is the closest I get to clubbing or dance parties these days. But it’s super productive and fun! It is so satisfying to look around at my gleaming home, with a freezer and fridge full of deliciousness.
2. DIY Heaven
I love working on my house and usually tasks are done here and there. When I have an unplugged DIY day, I put my head down and get to it! Sometimes I pre-plan what I’m going to do and make sure I have everything on hand and others I wing it. The last DIY day, I painted my basement and made it into a lovely inviting space for working and homework.
3. Mummy and Gigi’s day of fun
This one is pretty self-explanatory. We will decide on some activities we want to do and off we go. One day we park-hopped, came home for lunch and park-hopped some more. Another we took the bus downtown and played tourist. In the evening, we played board games and read together – memories we will both cherish forever.
Sometimes I need a day to unplug and unwind. To slide out from under all the stresses and crap of life. Those days I just unplug. Eat my favorite foods. Binge-watch Netflix and generally be lazy. Maybe have a nap or three. Wonderful…
The first few times I unplugged, I caved and checked email before bed. Now I wait until the morning because I sleep so much better and that is worth so much more to me.
If the idea of 24 hours is too daunting for you, try an evening. At suppertime, unplug until the morning. Or wait a few hours in the morning before plugging in again. If you are having trouble concentrating on a task, turn off all distractions and git'er done!