Technology is an integral part of day-to-day life. Many of us get so caught up in our phones, computers, TVs and video games that we forget to make time for our families. Sometimes it’s nice to unplug for a weekend and reconnect with your spouse and children. Here are some tips for planning a tech-free family weekend.
Everyone Must Participate
In order to get the most out of this experience, everyone needs to be involved. You can’t ask the kids to stay off their games for a weekend if you’re on your phone the whole time. Make a commitment to do this as a family, and you can all enjoy time with one another.
Set the Rules ahead of Time
Prepare for the tech-free weekend a little in advance. Explain to the children that this is not a punishment. It’s something you’re all going to do, and you’re going to have a good time. If they know about it ahead of time, they will be less resistant when the time comes.
Also take a moment to set the rules for the tech-free weekend. No phones, no computers, no tablets, no video games. Everyone leaves their phones in a basket in the kitchen. If you watch TV, you do so as a family (maybe plan a family movie night). These are just examples of rules you can set. Whatever the stipulations may be, make sure they apply to every family member.
Pick the Right Weekend
Be mindful when you are planning a tech-free family weekend. Don’t pick a weekend when your children have to do a large project for school, because they will probably need the computer. Don’t pick a weekend you’re on call at work because you won’t be able to turn your phone off. Consider the entire family’s schedule, and choose a weekend that works for everyone.
Plan Some Activities for the Weekend
You don’t have to plan out every second of the weekend, but try to have some activities to do. You could go see a movie as a family or have a fun lunch in the park. You could take your children to a museum or visit family members you don’t see often. Ask your children what they would like to do, and use that input while you’re planning. There are tons of fun things to do without technology.
At Heron Ridge Associates, we love helping families come together. That is why we offer family counseling in Michigan. Our family counselors use evidence-based therapy techniques to help children and their parents communicate effectively with one another. If you would like to learn more about family counseling, give us a call at (734) 454-3560.