“Wow! That iPad is really keeping you busy!”
I had to swallow that big ball of guilt that rose from the pit of my stomach after hearing those heavy words from my daughter. Heavier still because I really was not busy – I was just browsing through my Facebook timeline. I had to turn off my gadget right there and then to focus on her – my beautiful 4-year old who was showing me her latest magic trick (or was it a new dance step that she made up?)
Focus. Intentional parenting. Distraction-free moments. These are by-words that we often hear and think to ourselves, “I wish I could do that, but who has time?”
I was just thinking that same thing last week and wondering why I was always racing after time, no matter how much of it I seemed to have! And then I kick myself in the butt after realizing how many minutes I spend checking who posted what over the past hour.
I love how all these platforms keep me connected with relatives abroad, long-lost friends, and like-minded individuals who encourage and inspire. But do I REALLY have to check on my friends’ activities every hour? Do I really have to know what my Instagram friends are eating for dinner? Will the whole of Twitter-dom die if I don’t post where I am right this very moment?
N-O! And you know what? It was such a RELIEF to realize the answer!
It was so liberating to be free from the clutches of my gadget and just focus on what is right in front of me. To eat breakfast and savor every bite of that melt-in-the-mouth ensaimada. To talk to my husband and listen to how his day went. To play unhurriedly with my daughter and hear her laugh at my “funniness.”
Less than a week of trying to be deliberate about it and I already see how much less whining I hear from the Energizer Bunny, how relaxed our evenings have become, and how happier we are as a family. Focus. Intentional parenting. Distraction-free moments.
Let’s Unplug Our Evenings
So, I thought of challenging myself to sustain a month of unplugged evenings and see where it takes me.
Join me! I’m not asking for much.
Just think of some of the plugged activities that steal moments from your family – Facebook, Candy Crush, Feedly, you get the idea – and promise to refrain from it from 7pm onwards, and to intentionally spend that time with your family.
I will not ask you for pictures or to post something everyday because that kind of defeats the purpose, doesn’t it? But I do encourage you to tell us from time to time below how it is going for you so we can inspire each other in our quest for focus, intentional parenting, and distraction-free moments.
Are you up to it? Let me know in the comments below if you’re joining me!