There is a disease in our home that has been insidiously growing right under our noses–literally! It is running rampant and sapping the life out of our lives and relationships. It is practically causing reckless addiction and it’s almost to the point of needing professional intervention. I’m talking about E.D.A.–Electronic Device Addiction.
All of us–me, my wife, and each of my kids–have an electronic device now. Whether it’s a smart phone or a tablet, they have practically become extra appendages. We used to have conversations and play games on road trips. Not too much anymore. We used to have movie nights and watch a movie together. Now, it seems we can’t get through a half-hour sitcom without also being glued to a device playing a game or surfing the latest headlines or sports scores.
In hindsight, buying my older kids a smart phone has easily been one of the worst decisions I’ve made as a father.
So I’m on a mission to rectify it and it has to start with me. I have to model it before I can impose it. Here’s my three step plan:
- Put my phone down and walk away. I am trying to leave it on the kitchen counter and wean myself from not only having it with me all the time, but from checking my three email accounts continuously.
- Turning it off. There really is no reason I need to have it on when I’m at home. If someone needs to reach me, the email or voicemail will catch it. I can check it later. Plus, I still have a home phone and my extended family members have that number if it’s an emergency.
- When on a road trip, leaving it in the car. Imagine being able to look at my kids or my wife in the face and having a real conversation with them. Or looking around and enjoying the scenery.
The only way to beat this disease is to confront it head-on. Hopefully, my family will follow my example and deal with it as well. Our time is too precious and valuable to waste it on a lifeless electronic device. Break the addiction and live life.
For your advantage,
Do or your family you struggle with this “disease”? Have you implemented these or other measures to curb it? Please share below. I would love to hear feedback or other ideas.