Starting at Sunset March 1st through March 2nd it is National Un-plugged day.
A day where Americans are urged to "un-plug" from electronic devices. The news of this latest "holiday" made me chuckle. In our home we have had scheduled "Un-plug" days and weekends, Our vacations are generally speaking "un-plugged" affairs. Why? We found ourselves under a constant barrage of negative and sensationalized news in social media, daily paper, and old school television and movies- Everyone had a microphone and was screaming out the mundane, horrific in a constant wave of information.
We found ourselves stressed out, not sleeping well, our diet and exercise program had kinda been kicked to the curb because we just didn't have time, and were too tired.
As Individuals we often forget that WE control our environments. We get so distracted by all the crap swirling around us, that we get bogged down in habits and routines that are easy, and don't challenge us. We become complacent and soon we find ourselves like gold fish circling the drain.
As we stopped and looked around, we realized we both felt like we were trapped in a environment that we didn't like and really didn't like how we FELT!
With our little electronic iFriends and Droid buddies in hand, we are constantly switching between a variety of tasks, when bing, we are off to the next distraction.
They have done studies to show that humans are NOT good at multi-tasking. When you are constantly switching tasks, your brain's processing center who's job is to help you focus and learn new information is being used up by being constantly redirected from one task to the next, to another....
Instead of flitting back and forth try finishing something then moving on.
I have a list of items at the beginning of the day, that I need to complete, Finish a task THEN move on to the next, when you complete one thing before moving on to the next you will find you have more completed tasks vs having several unfinished things on your plate.
Unplug from the madness! We set some boundaries in our home to help us reclaim sanity and balance back into our lives. It has resulted in us losing weight, feeling better, and reconnecting with friends and colleges, which keeps work humming. Get creative, in your home environment you have endless distractions- take a play from Mr. Rodgers, put on a sweater, or jacket that is your "work jacket", Mentally it is a reminder that you are in "work mode", when you stop to take a break, take off the jacket.
Here are some other tips to help you reclaim some balance in your life, be more productive and enjoy more "unplugged time"
1) No cellphones, Pads, or computers in the bedroom (ever!)- Have your phone in any other room and turn your notifications OFF after 9pm. The bedroom is for resting, and is a intimate sanctuary, respect it and protect it, you will sleep better I promise you!
2) Vacation destinations- Plan your next trip where there is no cell coverage- Take a day trip, weekend, or vacation with a friend- We have a country filled with National, State and Regional parks that are beautiful resources to educate you about our local natural resources, learn ways that you can be a better "neighbor" walk through them with a 2 or 4 legged friend, Your soul will thank you. You may not be able to help yourself from snapping a few pictures to post online LATER!
3) Business meetings- I schedule meetings when ever possible as hikes, or walks.
Just the act of getting out of the office and walking to the corner cafe, changes your perspective and gets your body moving. Re framing who you are is key to your success, when you walk hold your head high, don't look down, take deep breaths and be grateful for being able to enjoy this simple yet beautiful action, it's a free gift you can give a friend too!
4) Diet Re-evaluation-
- Read your labels- If you have any canned items in your home they should only have the item listed and water, no preservatives, or color enhancers!
- GMO watch- 70% of packaged foods contain Genetically modified ingredients- do you have cereal, cookies, snack bars, or anything with corn syrup in your cupboard? Corn Soy, and Cotton are the 3 top Genetically Engineered foods- You will be surprised how many products you have in your home that have been modified, get rid of the offenders and make educated decisions about you and your families health.
- Limit how much bread and starch your eating every day- Most Americans are loading up in this category- and foods like this that quickly break down into a high glucose or high glycemic index food- which spike your blood sugar then leave you feeling hungry, Notice that you will be hungry a hour after eating a Big mac and Fry's?
5) Get up and MOVE!- I don't need to link to a article here for you to know the benefit of exercise. Make yourself walk at lunch or meet a friend for a walk in the morning before or after work!. Make yourself do this every day for one month. I promise you will feel better at the end of 30 days and have a healthy habit that will help you feel great!
6) Call someone in your contact list- (before you unplug) Schedule time to get together face to face- for a cuppa joe, or to be your partner in crime for #5. People are looking for a reason to get out and not be glued to their electronic leash- reconnect face to face. You will develop relationships and find your personal, professional, and spiritual life are filled in wonderful ways that you hadn't imagined!
Now, if you'll excuse me I have a new client to meet, we are going for a walk to discuss a new project they are excited to get started on and were going to do it with out any electronic leashes.
What are your favorite ways to "un-plug"? I would love to hear about them, or if you need help figuring that out, let's go for a walk.... Come on, it's a beautiful day out there!