This story is about disconnecting. This post is intentionally short because you shouldn’t be hidden behind a screen this week. Go light up the faces of your family and friends by giving them the gift of you. Turn off your technology!
The next seven days, between Christmas and New Years, is a week of wind-down. We know it doesn’t mean our responsibilities disappear but for one week out of every year, outside expectations of what we can and should be doing lessen. And so it is with Fiftiness. This week is about family and friends or simply enjoying the wind-down and thinking about what 2019 might mean for you.
It’s hard to turn off your cell phone completely, but it isn’t that difficult to put it down. This holiday, try putting it away in another room. Make a deal with yourself about checking for texts and emails half the amount of time you usually do.
When you think about hitting the “like” button on a friend’s post, stop yourself. Do something totally old-fashioned: pick up your phone and call them. That post that you were going to like? It’s a great conversation starter. I saw on Facebook that… and let the sound of their voice and your shared laughter fill you with holiday cheer.
Better yet? Turn off the games and social media apps. Be social in real time.
Skip the errands now that your Christmas and other holiday shopping is over and do something extraordinary! Take your family for a walk on the beach, or in a snowy park. Go to the museum. Or invent a driving tour of the best donuts in your town, historic sites, go on a scavenger hunt for purple houses, or the best holiday decorations.
The idea is to celebrate the people you are with in real time. The realities of our fast-paced life, however, is that we can’t actually BE with all the people we want to see this Holiday. The beauty of technology is that it brings people who are far away closer and often in real time, albeit via a screen. Facetime is an amazing gift for grandparents in another state. Family Share photos are wonderful for sharing a photo of what’s happening the moment it is snapped. Even Facebook can bring the celebration to all those who can’t be in the same room with us. Don’t forsake them. Sometimes technology can save a broken heart. But remember that there are people right there with you deserving and in need of your full and undivided attention. Chose carefully what moments to document and post, and what moments to breath in and savor.
Give the gift of your time. Amazing things truly happen when you exchange Facebook for face time!
Merry Christmas Everyone!
More reading on how to unplug and why!