The invention of cellphones has influenced our cultural landscape. They have completely revolutionized the human society by expanding the communication arena and offering numerous other uses such as information access, playing games, online business, etc.
People today are hooked to their phones, irrespective of their age. The alias generation is born in the lap of technology so their association with tech gadgets, especially cellphones is prolific. However, cellphones dominate the family time which is the main reason for distanced relationship between parents and kids. A survey reported in The New York times, conducted by Common Sense Media in 2016, revealed that parents spent 9hours and 22minutes of screen time per day. If out of the 24hours, parents surf around 9hours on their phones, how much time do they invest in their kids?
Kids are a reflection of their parents. If parents interact so much with their phones, how can they ask kids to disconnect with their tech devices? Therefore, it is important for parents to regulate their own and kid’s use of devices. If the same rules apply to both parents and kids, it certainly adds a spice to the family life.
In the world where people are glued to their phones, it is nice to lose connection for a while. Parents can create specific zones that are tech-free. No digital participation must be allowed in these areas. Let’s have a look at the no-phone zones encouraged by parents.
- In the bedroom
Evidence suggests that using a smartphone before bedtime is detrimental to your sleep and overall health. However, teens sleeping with their phones is quite a norm these days. A study reported in the Psychology Today reveals that every 1 in 5 kids wake up at night to check their phone for any notifications. The temptation to bring cellphones to the bedroom is strong. Parents can limit their own usage in the bedrooms in order to encourage the kids to follow the same rule. This can also lead to a healthy relationship between the couples as they can develop attachment towards each other instead of being busy in their own devices.
- At the dinner table
Families that eat together stay together. Keeping phones away when you are at the dinner table gives you the opportunity to interact with other family members. The basic table etiquette is to cease your digital participation when you are siting with a group of people. Since it’s the best way to bond as a family, don’t ruin it by using your phone under the table. Your ‘let me just Google this important information’ strategy will not be a good enough excuse. So being a parent, you have to lead by example that you must not invite your digital gadgets on the dinner table.
- When hanging outdoors
Instead of playing out with friends and neighbors, kids today prefer playing online games or watch seasons on Netflix. This is a huge contrast between the generation X and the older generation. Many tech devices such as smartphones or tablets are portable and can be carried of wherever you go. Parents must plan outdoor trips to amusement parks, movies, etc. with kids without any digital distractions. It’s a conscious decision: you must see what is there to see and enjoy rather than using your phone. Phones must only be used for emergency situations, otherwise both parents and kids must spend quality time with each other while dining out, walking on a beach, etc.
- During the vacation
In the fast-paced lives of today, it is important to take time out for holidays. A holiday trip can refresh and rejuvenate an adult as well as a kid. It is an ideal time when parents can create a lot of memories with their kids, without letting the phones miss the moment. Do not waste time taking selfies or posting updates on social media about the places you visit. This trend is especially common among kids as they ‘tag places’ they visit to keep others informed of their activities on social media. Enjoy the scenic beauty of the place you’re visiting and make plans to explore the holiday destination. Forget technology for some time.
- In the car
What’s the use of picking your child from school or dropping him if both you and your kid are busy in their own cellphones? Don’t take the long rides in car for granted. It can be an ideal time to discuss about future life of your kids. Try to engage them to talk. Being closer to your kid can help you become their go-to person. You can easily make open conversations with your child in car and teach them about real-life experiences, regarding their age.