Take the No Tablet, No Smartphone Challenge

Recently, Ross and I decided to spend one day a week without our technology.

Know what?  It’s turned out really great!  Felt weird not to text, or google, or check email. But  the rewards of doing this were astounding.  We’ve had such fun together!

The complaints about kids looking down at their smartphones seem to be growing.  It’s hard to blame them.  I do it too!

And if you’re one of the frustrated parents constantly competing with devices . . .

take the no-tech challenge!  As a family!  Just for one day!!

Pick a Saturday or Sunday, plan a hike or bike, beach or lake adventure.  Plan the day’s meals, play some games, read a book out loud together.  This is about time TOGETHER.  To talk, to have fun.  To connect with each other.

Without the tablets, laptops, and smartphones.

You might get bigtime resistance from your child!

You might hear, “NO WAY! I can’t do without my tablet for a day!”

Instead of engaging in a power struggle (where one of you WILL be the loser) . . . here’s an opportunity to practice win-win negotiating!

You can calmly say, “I hear that you feel strongly about having your smartphone all the time.  And I want you to win.  I really want to do this as a family.   If I give up what I want, then I lose.  I want to win, too.  So, how can we BOTH win?”

Then, with your child, come up with creative possibilities .   Such as:

  • next Saturday would be a better day because . . . .
  • how about just part of one day?

  • can I have a friend over for the day? then, I won’t be texting her.

  • how about not having my tablet, but keeping my smartphone?

  • how about just you two (parents) do this?

  • we could try it out during meal time.

  • how about no devices when we’re in the car?

  • (OK. Keep going. . .you both can think of more creative options)

Then pick one solution YOU BOTH can live with.

So, what if the only solution your child can live with is “How about just you two (parents) do this”?

If it’s real clear that — no matter how hard you try — you’re not gonna get agreement, consider just you and your spouse doing it.

This is not about giving in.  It’s about choosing your battles.

Your child might need to see that you can survive this crazy experiment for one day!

After you’ve done the challenge, please tell us about it below.  And . . . if this has been valuable to you, please invite your friends to visit our site!

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