Jul 29, 2019
Parenting And Cell Phone Addiction. Tips For Taking Back Control.
Let's be honest with ourselves and each other. Technology and our phones are awesome! We can call, text, Video call, connect with loved ones, make new friends, conduct business, read/listen to a book, watch videos, write blog posts, stay social, listen to music and so much more. All on one device. Pretty cool.
Even though they are a huge asset to our lives they are also a huge distraction. Sometimes the people we spend the most time with, the ones right in front of us are the ones who suffer.
Sometimes they have their heads buried in their phones as well. Except your children.
Young children need and crave one on one immediate interaction. You are their guiding light, their example, the one who assures them everything is OK with a calm word or glance.
You are the one they look up to, the one they adore, the one they crave attention from.
If it's not already there, cell phone addiction is sure to become the number one planet addiction. Look around you. It’s almost insanity the amount of people staring at their phones. It’s now towards the top of the list for distracted driving.
So what do we do? First of all, we are not passing on any judgement. We all use our phones. But being in control of our phone usage vs it controlling us is key.
Become as present and in the moment as possible with your children and those you are surrounded by. Acknowledge them, listen fully and interact.
Pick and choose the best time to check your notifications or excuse yourself to make a phone call. It's OK if you don't answer a call immediately. The person calling you will survive. If it's an emergency they'll call back right away or text you. (Let your loved ones know you will be on your phone less and the protocol to follow in an emergency. (Call twice in a row)
Let everyone know that you'll be unplugging during certain times of the day, such as the dinner hour or during your nightly bedtime routine. Your children will be adults in a blink of an eye. I know you hear this a lot but it's true. The time you have with them experiencing each stage of their childhood is limited and goes very fast.
As busy as we all are we have to prioritize time for being present. Present with our loved ones, present with ourselves and allow ourselves to just be sometimes.
Turn off notifications on your phone at night. Better yet get the damn thing out of your room. Allow your body to rest without flashes of light or electromagnetic radiation. Your body needs a break from the constant exposure. Energetically you need to be able to recharge. Your children's little bodies definitely don't need the 24 hour exposure. Use it as an alarm clock? Turn on alarm and place in another room with the volume up. Or better yet buy an old fashioned alarm clock.
For older kids, have a shut off time and require phones to be left in a basket in the kitchen/living room or somewhere handy to grab in the morning on their way out the door.
Take control - Place your phone in another room or turn off if it's not needed. Decide when you'll check your messages. Demonstrate to your older children how they can be in control of their phone usage and that's it's ok to resist that urge to check the phone all the time.
Good luck! Be sure to let us know what you think.
~ Carol and Stacy
Intentional Conscious Parenting
Cell Phone and Cancer - National Cancer Institute
Intentional Conscious Parenting (Our blog)
10 Ways To Parent Consciously (Our Book)
Study Shows Link Between Smartphone Use and Lack of Sleep Among Teens