As a UX Researcher at User Insight, I spend a lot of my time evaluating mobile, tablet, desktop, TV (and everything else in-between) experiences. It is hard to turn off the part of my brain that evaluates experiences and I always feel like I need to sign up for everything, watch as much as I can, or learn about a new service, all for the end goal of staying current and being informed on what’s out there. With all these distractions it’s hard to focus and tune out all the noise. Everything in my life today is digital and integrated – all with efficiency in mind – at least during the work week.
Weekends are a different story. You see, for me, weekends are all about family and the best way for me to focus on them and tune out the other “noise” is to put down my phone on Friday evening and not pick it up again until Sunday. It isn’t always the easiest decision and I do find myself breaking it every now and then but for the most part, I find myself looking forward to an unplugged Saturday.
By giving up my devices for one day a week, I’ve learned a few things:
- I’m not as dependent on my devices as I thought I was.
- Time can be savored and things can move slower – I don’t always have to be so efficient.
- Things can wait, texts, emails, invites can all wait a day.
- I’m showing my children I don’t need to look at my phone all the time.
- I take in and absorb rather than trying to document it on my phone and social media.
As the air turns crisp and the days get shorter, I encourage you to put down your phone and enjoy a little time outside and unplugged. I guarantee you’ll step back into the week recharged and with a better perspective.