Our culture is inundated with technology. TVs, computers, laptops, iPads, iPhones, iTouches, cell phones, smart phones, the list goes on and on and on. They even have little computer screen tablets at some restaurants now. The pace our culture has on being consumed with technology is dizzying sometimes.
My ninth marriage tip is to take intentional time away from technology together. That's right...unplug. On purpose.
This has been inspired in part by that experience at a restaurant with tablets at each table. It seems innocent enough, you could order food, look at the menu. Honestly I was sort of confused by it because I wasn't sure if we were supposed to order from that or wait for our waitress. But what made me more concerned was when I glanced around the restaurant.
There were other couples, families and groups of people huddled around, you guessed it, the tablet. Or one would be on the tablet, the other on a phone. Basically everyone had their eyes on a screen. So Zach and I turned out screen around and put it to the other end of the table and had our own face to face conversation and dinner.
While I use technology and love the convenience and connection it offers, I also recognize that being constantly glued to a screen is not good for your real life relationships, especially with your spouse. Zach and I try to have intentional time where we do not have our cell phones on us. They are in another room, on silent, turned upside down. Or sometimes we will just leave our cell phones at home when we are going out on a date (I know, what?! How do we survive??)
It may seem awkward at first if you're not used to being without your phone. Or feel like you are missing something. You may get "FOMO," or, "Fear Of Missing Out." That is the first clue that there's an imbalance. Face to face quality time with our spouse should not be that way. It should be life giving, fun, and make us grow.
You can decide what sort of frequency is good for you. You might start out with once a month, or maybe turning the phones off on your date, or once a week having a morning with no screens. The important thing is to intentionally set aside the time for it.
Hear me right, I am not saying that technology is evil. I use it every single day. I am using it to write this blog, I use it as a platform to inspire and encourage others, I use it to make new friends and connect to people, and I use it for my business.
But if there's one thing I learn over and over is that there is a proper time and place for it, and there is a proper time and place for there to be a break from it. It encourages you to get out of your shell, communicate face to face, and grow. It can deepen your connection with your spouse, and maybe you'll find something new you both love doing together!
So, set a time, ditch the screens, and find something fun to do together! Trust me, there's lots of fun to be had as a married couple. Just think on it a little bit!
Do you currently have any time that you and your spouse unplug from technology? What works for you?