Sarah is a yoga teacher, custom framer, babysitter, and artist. She loves painting and spending time with her rat, gerbil, and hamster.
Technology is all around us, all the time, everyday. It surrounds us in the form of television, Internet, cell phones, ipods, ipads, video games, and more. Many of us rely heavily on these electronics to add ease and comfort to our lives. It seems as though we spend more time looking at screens then looking at the real world. What exactly are we missing? I challenge you to find out. Take one day and "unplug" yourself. This means no electronics, internet, or cell phone. Take a break from your digital devices and discover what life has to offeri
I find it refreshing to unplug from it for a while. You kind of forget how deeply you get embedded in it. -Will Wright
It is true that we become embedded in all the gadgets that are available to us. We may not even realized how truly immersed we are until we take a moment and step back from it all. How different will a nature walk be without your cell phone or even a camera to take pictures? Use this challenge as an opportunity to investigate, explore, and discover everything around you. I think you will find that a sense of wonder will blossom inside you.
No Beeps, Clicks, Ringing, Vibrating, or Buzzing
First, let people know that you are unplugging. Make sure the people in your life know that you will not get back to them or respond for the day. If you work at a computer, choose your day off to do this. When I first tried unplugging, I felt nervous and anxious...I was craving the internet as soon as I woke up. These feelings are normal and don't worry... they will pass. You may not know what to do with yourself at first. Try connecting with a loved one or nurturing your health. Finish that book that you started but put down. Get outside and experience nature without snapping pictures. Enjoy the moment.
It may be difficult to do but going without technology is extremely rewarding. Everyone's experience will of course be different and it may be a good idea to document your day. Whether you journal daily or only write when you have a grocery list, I suggest you take the time to write down your thoughts and feelings throughout the day. Just observe and write without judging. Its not "wrong" if you aren't feeling happy or even feel uncomfortable. Later you can take what you have documented and perhaps start to question why you thought or felt the way you did.
Don't force anything. Opening up to life without technology can be a slow process. At first you may just notice the tension in your body that is usually ignored when sitting for hours at time in front of the computer. Or perhaps you notice a beautiful spider's web in nature that you normally would rush by and never really see.
Experience the day without placing labels on anything as good or bad. Although technology can pull us away from certain aspects of life, it isn't a bad thing. It just is. In fact technology is very useful and does a great deal of good. The point of this exercise is to realize the grip technology can sometimes take and understand that we are in control of our lives.
Back to "Normal" Life
Perhaps after completing this challenge you will reconsider what "normal" really means to you. Do you want normal to be in front of a screen all day? Look back on what you have written about your experience. I encourage you to make small changes where you can see that technology has its grip too tight. This may be more difficult than you predict. Are you watching television in order to avoid something else? Sticky emotions may have arisen when you unplugged that you weren't expecting. What can you do to positively face these? You don't have to throw out your television and doing so won't solve all your problems...but you may be able to see them more clearly. Or you may just notice a sense of peace within yourself when you are mindful of life, the good and the bad, instead of zoning it all out.
Julie K Henderson on March 28, 2015:
Fantastic article! You make many worthwhile points. Thank you for sharing.
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on July 12, 2012:
We would all have much more time to accomplish other things. That is for sure! Prior to having a computer, I used to read many more books than I have time to do now. I guess it is all a matter of choices!
Sarah O'Brien (author) from Pennsylvania on June 23, 2012:
I hardly remember not having the internet, and I grew up with tv and video games on all the time! I agree that without it all I also get a lot more done. :) Thanks for your comment!
Redberry Sky on June 23, 2012:
I did this for *ages* - lived without a TV or mobile phone or anything that buzzed, clanked or beeped at me for a couple of years. I eventually got dragged back into the modern world, but I did get lots more done when I was without it all :)
Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on June 16, 2012:
Nice hub, teacup. I'm much older than you and did not have electronics available to me when I was growing up. Except, of course a record player. My imagination was my force. I was always outside pretending. Read my hub, "How I Became Bravewarrior" to get an idea. When weather forced my inside, I would pretend I was a school teacher, or an ice-skater, sliding across the tiled floor of our basement. When I was really, really young, I'd turn my tricycle upside down, pour grass clippings thru the front wheel as I turned the pedals and pretend I was a popcorn vendor at a carnival. My mom would clean out cans and cereal boxes and I'd play "store".
Today, I would much rather read and listen to music than be on the computer. However, my envision of once again becoming a freelance writer is dictating I become a techy, rather than a user. Heavy sigh!
I commend you at your age, having grown up in the electronic world, to pose this challenge. The young people I've met on HP have given me a new look at the upcoming generation. It puts a smile on this old gal's face and in my heart!; and gives me renewed hope for our country.
Stand tall and strong my young friend. Our world will be a better place!
Santoli Fine Art from Ridgewood, NJ on June 12, 2012:
Sarah O'Brien (author) from Pennsylvania on June 12, 2012:
@ Dbro Thank you and I hope you enjoy being "unplugged" for a little while!
Dbro from Texas, USA on June 12, 2012:
Wonderful hub and a great idea. I've long felt we are getting too dependent on technology. Thank you for the inspiration to put it all aside for just a while.