It's no secret that 'screen time' is a daily occurrence for most people. Whether it's on our phone, computer, TV, or tablet, the temptation is always there. For me, it seems some days there isn't much of a pull but every so often I've stared at my phone or computer so much that I wonder where the day went. Now that summer is fast approaching (at least in the Northern Hemisphere) I typically find myself resisting the urge to look at any kind of screen, although it's always nice to have some ideas handy to distract me when I am feeling that pull. I have compiled ten fun alternatives to explore when the urge to use technology is mounting.
Play cards with or without a partner. Funny story. I recently tried to spice up my nighttime routine with my family so we all played a card game. It wasn't your typical card game, though. I took a bowl and handed my husband a deck of cards and I had my own. We sat about eight feet away from it and tossed (or maybe 'flung' is a better word) cards at the bowl to see who could get the most inside it. As if that wasn't enough excitement for the night (haha), I later used the cards to build a card house. My son showed me a new technique and, bam, I had a card mansion. The possibilities with cards are endless.
Send some snail mail. I am not the best at sending snail mail but I think with the right stationery this could be a really fun distraction. And let's not forget it will obviously make the person's day who is receiving that mail.
Rearrange your furniture. Nothing makes a room look brand new like moving your furniture around. This of course could lead to organizing and getting rid of things that have been around longer than needed. You will feel so accomplished when you are done:)
Do a puzzle. There have been so many studies that have shown how puzzles can help improve memory and problem-solving. Start with an easier puzzle and build your way to a more challenging one.
Make a list of places you would like to travel to. This is a great way to get to know yourself a little more and putting it in writing could make the dream destination more of a reality. You could even use a travel book to look through to really zero in on your future destinations.
Have a cooking/baking contest with your family or even neighbors and friends. This is such a great way to use your creativity plus get together with people to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Creating a favorite childhood meal or an old family recipe is a great place to start.
Draw a self-portrait. I'm sure this can sound intimidating to many of you but it's not meant to be graded or sold, so what do you have to lose!? Grab some paper and a pencil, then sit in front of a mirror and get to it. This is a perfect time to speak to yourself in a non-critical way. Start getting used to saying nice things to yourself. Your insides will thank you.
Have a picnic. Switch up your eating routine. Set up a blanket and, either outside or on your living room floor, have a long and intentional meal without technology. Savor your food and take in the lovely environment around you.
Throw on some music and dance (like no one is watching). Do not underestimate the power of music and dancing! Whether you are with family members or friends, try choreographing your own music video. There are sure to be tons of laughs.
Lay a blanket out in your yard and stargaze. I used to do this quite a bit when I was a teenager (aka before 'adulting' set in). Spend some time outside looking up at the stars and maybe make a wish or two.
Hopefully, you are able to find one or two new ideas to turn to before you give in to staring at that screen. Once you get some new routines set up it'll be easy to start some more. Being in the present moment will help in so many areas of your life instead of looking at what others are posting on social media. Now go enjoy this Summer season!