Recently I saw the #RediscoverNature Nature Valley video pop up on my Facebook newsfeed. It’s an extremely well-done video that surely elicits some mom guilt to those of us raising children in a very digital age.
As luck would have it, I saw this video just days before leaving for my annual summer visit to Wisconsin. Knowing I would be in the beautiful North Woods with plenty of outdoor opportunities, I decided Mary was going to get a technology detox. No television or computer. No princesses, ponies, or pirates – unless they were imaginary. I was not going to let Mary veg on the couch when she could be playing with her cousins, visiting with her grandparents or exploring nature. We were going to create memories.
We had a wonderful week rediscovering nature! Pontoon boat rides, fishing and swimming filled our days. We explored the lake in a kayak – talking about the early explorers as we glided through lily pads and tall grasses. We found turtles, frogs and even wild turkeys. We went on unicorn hunts and found furniture for our fairy garden. It was a wonderful week of connecting and sharing.
While the fresh air coupled with being with family made me feel better – I was astonished at how I think the detox helped Mary. She had a wonderful week. No meltdowns (other than one because she had to use a public toilet), she listened and was helpful. She was pleasant and calm. She went to sleep easily every night – one night even asking to go to bed early.
We’re back to the daily routine but something has changed…I’m continuing the detox. Instead of coming home and letting Mary watch “her show” she is now encouraged to play with her toys, play dress-up or go outside. Last night we caught her in her tent reading a book with a flashlight. I’m hoping her good behavior continues.
My challenge to you – consider a technology detox – maybe it’s for a weekend or an entire week. See the difference it makes in your kids – and probably in you!