Thinking about my average weekday, my phone is never far from reach. My phone wakes me up in the morning, tells me when my bus will arrive and even pays for my morning coffee. I read the news on my phone on the way to work and I usually use it to check Facebook or Instagram during my lunch break. On the bus ride home, I listen to my NPR app to minimize screen time.
It’s no wonder that when I get home, the last thing I want to do is watch TV. At that point, I’ve been staring at screens, tiny and huge, for 10 hours. And my media intake is at capacity. I feel overstimulated.
I want to break the cycle. I want to see the ride to work instead of the Instagram feed on my phone. I want to talk to my husband instead of email him. And I want to feel like my experiences are still valid even if I don’t share them on social media.
Do you want these things too?
My iPhone used to be useful, but now it’s making me feel disconnected and out of touch. Even my dog notices if I’m on my phone during our evening walk. He gets agitated and acts out because he realizes I’m distracted. Perhaps it’s time to wake up and put down the phone.
I challenge you to unplug. I’m challenging myself too. For 24 hours I am going to turn off my phone, my TV and my computer. I’m going to be more present at every point of my day and focus on what’s in front of me instead of what’s on a screen. (Just to clarify, this is about turning off technology, not all electronics. I’ll still be firing up my coffee maker and using my car and other electronics.)
If you are ready to go dark for 24 hours, join us on our Facebook event. You can choose any day you’d like in November. We’ll send you tips for going dark and a Facebook badge to let your friends and family know you won’t be in contact for a day. We’d also love for you to share your experiences after you’ve gone dark. Did you see something you never noticed before on your walk to school? Did you have a meaningful conversation with someone because you were fully present? We want to hear about it.
This is ASDA’s very first Wellness Challenge. We’ll launch one challenge every month to help you shape a healthier and happier you. Each challenge will focus on one of five dimensions of wellness. Click here to learn more about the challenges and ASDA’s wellness initiative.
Click the button to join this challenge!
~Kim Kelly, publications manager