Disconnect to Reconnect
You have 2 or 3 beautiful kids, a dog and juggle a very busy life. You run from place to place keeping your family super active. Baseball, basketball, soccer, swimming, chess club and music (the list goes on). You're not a "gamer" and you try to control how much iPad, iPhone and general "screen" time your kids intake daily.
You get your "micro-news" binge 3 times a day from Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter etc. You sometimes feels like bedtime and mornings have been taken over by Netflix series, emails and texts.
Almost everyone you're around has one eye on their "iDevice" (except maybe your parents. And, even they are adopting the "iCulture" in many ways).
You grew up outside. You rode your bike until the street lights came on. You remember your first kiss and didn't tweet about it. You sat at the dinner table with your family at least a few nights a week. Things were different, right? Simple. Meaningful. Personal. Yours.
Your uncle talks about the good ole days; like listening to baseball games on the radio and... You know how the stories go.
You're a little worried about your kids' future. You find yourself questioning if you're interacting with them enough or teaching them the right lessons to be kind, successful and respectful.
You're not alone.
Like generations before us, things ARE different. The radio was the Wifi. Dinner conversation was our "micro-news". We're naturally connected with our surroundings, but our "surroundings" are bigger now. Global, live, multimedia news feeds into anything and everything. Just a couple clicks or a "convenient" push notification away.
If you're like my wife and me, you're not considering permanent off-the-grid family living nor teasing your hair into dreads, but it does sound nice sometimes. Well, maybe not the dreads!
In February of 2015, we decided to explore a change. Probably not a surprise to you, but our decision to look for something "different" came directly following 3 extended family Thanksgivings, 5 family Christmas' and 2 New Years Eve's parties. Anyone have us beat on that chaos? I won't disclose the bill that accompanied our eventful holidays.
We booked a 6 week extended stay in a sleepy, disconnected fishing village in Yelapa, Jalisco, Mexico. November to January. Our kids missed 3 weeks of school and we missed every winter holiday in the States. Wifi was spotty at best leaving us "disconnected" in this little village.
We didn't know what we'd find on this escape. After a couple weeks of "iDetox", it was clear. The "noise" was nearly gone. Hiking everyday, cooking food as a family, board games, relentless chess matches, so many card games that we made up our own, beach days galore, snorkeling, fishing, boat rides to even remoter villages, hidden beaches, waterfalls, new experiences, new friends... We were more connected with each other, ourselves and our environment than ever before.
Honestly, it wasn't easy, but it was worth it. Of course, we're back now and we have our "iTronics" nearby. But, we're different. We now know how to "reconnect".
Watch this video. It helps me understand our experience. Maybe it will inspire yours...
Ps. This video was created by a company in Thailand and I have no clue what they're promoting nor endorse it :)