Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Powering Down

Posted by CheapRunnerMichelle

We're Back!!!

As ya'll know we headed out first thing on Friday morning to head to Geneva, NY for Mike's race....don't worry I'm not going to spill the beans - I'll let him tell you all about his race experience tomorrow.


After we crossed the border at Niagara Falls and stopped for lunch, I suggested since we had no timeframe or schedule to following that day that we take the back roads as opposed to the highway the rest of way there...let's just go ahead and file that under #greatlifechoices...because the countryside scenery was spectacular! It was so beautiful.

The kids were on their iPads and at one point napping


So that meant that not only did Mike and I get to enjoy the countryside, but it also meant that we got a chance to just spend some time together and just connect. It came up in conversation - the whole idea of "un-plugging" from electronics and social media (like life was when we were kids). We both decided that from now on once a month we are going to, as a family, un-plug for a weekend from Social Media. We are going to put our phones and iPads away for a weekend...and just "be" together!

I read some articles about this subject - and I found out some interesting facts (Source http://www.becomingminimalist.com/unplug-please/)

(sadly, not surprising though; as I'm guilty of some of these)

- 84% of cell phone users claim they could not go a single day without their device.
- 67% of cell phone owners check their phone for messages, alerts, or calls — even when they don’t notice their phone ringing or vibrating.
- Studies indicate some mobile device owners check their devices every 6.5 minutes.
- 88% of U.S. consumers use mobile devices as a second screen even while watching television.
- Almost half of cell owners have slept with their phone next to their bed because they wanted to make sure they didn’t miss any calls.
- Traditional TV viewing eats up over six days (144 hours, 54 minutes) worth of time per month.
- Some researchers have begun labeling “cell phone checking” as the new yawn because of its contagious nature.

He goes on to share some healthy benefits to actually taking the plunge and choosing to un-plug:


1. Powering-down helps remove unhealthy feelings of jealousy, envy, and loneliness.
Researchers recently discovered that one in three people felt worse after visiting Facebook and more dissatisfied with their lives. Certainly, not every interaction with Facebook is a negative one. But typically, our own experience validates their research. From family happiness to body image to vacation destinations to the silly number of birthday greetings on a Facebook wall, the opportunity for envy presents itself often on social media. Powering-down for a period of time provides opportunity to reset and refocus appreciation and gratitude for the lives we have been given.

2. Powering-down combats the fear of missing out. Scientifically speaking, the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) has been recognized as a recently emerging psychological disorder brought on by the advance of technology. The premise is simple. Our social media streams are ever-filled with everything happening all around us. Nowadays, we even see the plates of food our friends are enjoying. And within this constant stream of notification, our fear of being left out continues to grow. Turning off social media and finding contentment in our present space is a welcome skill.

3. Solitude is harder to find in an always-connected world. Solitude grounds us to the world around us. It provides the stillness and quiet required to evaluate our lives. In a world where outside noise is coming quicker and louder than ever, the need for solitude becomes more apparent… and easier to overlook. True solitude will always require the intentional action of shutting off the noise and the screens.

4. Life, at its best, is happening right in front of you. Our world may be changing. But the true nature of life is not. Life, at its best, is happening right in front of you. These experiences will never repeat themselves. These conversations are unfiltered and authentic. And the love is real. But if we are too busy staring down at our screen, we’re gonna miss all of it.

5. Powering-down promotes creation over consumption...it forces us to use our minds. Play a board game, go ride a bike...just do something to exercise not only your body, but your mind

6. Addiction can only be understood when the object is taken away....I bet you don't even realize how addicted you are to it - because it's what we all do these days...it's the new normal

7. Life is still about flesh, blood, and eye contact....sure having SM friends are great, but at the end of the day there is nothing better then the friends/family that you have right there in front of you.The most fulfilling relationships are the ones in the world right in front of us. And spending too much time looking away from them does a great dis-service to my soul and theirs.

Don't get me wrong, I have met some amazing people through SM and actually this past weekend we got to meet and hang-out with one of our SM (now real life) friends


Laura drove up bright and early on race morning to volunteer at the race and come cheer Mike on with the kids and I. As soon as we met it was like we were old friends! It was awesome to have the day to get to know her even better...this is by far the best part of how technology has changed our lives!

Do you ever un-plug?

Ever met any of your SM friends?...if so...how did it go?
We've been very lucky - and everyone we have met, has been great AND exactly who they present themselves to be.


  1. Powering down is great! I use my phone a lot (even to watch tv - I don't have cable anymore and I know that makes me sound like a cavewoman but I absolutely love it) but I actually have gone some days without it (by accident) and I got a whole lot more done.

    I have met a couple of bloggers and they were really fun and sweet in person!

  2. Kristi@BlogforanAverageRunnerJuly 15, 2014 at 10:52 PM

    I've met 4 fellow bloggers at different races and it was a lot of fun to meet them in person. But I definitely have to do some unplugging - I am a little too obsessive about checking emails and surfing the net.
    I have been really "controlling" of my kids computer time and screen time though. They can go weeks without seeing t.v and only recently (at ages 9 and 11) have they started to have a little more computer time. They still don't own any tech other than their e-readers. I truly believe that by limiting their screen time to far less that the average kid, they have longer attention spans and are very creative boys. Now I just have to practice what I preach to them! Enjoy your unplugged weekends!

  3. So cool that you got to meet another blog friend!!
    I rarely totally unplug but this past week I did just that - other than posting a couple of pictures to FB & IG I didn't do anything with social media or technology - it was great!!!