Cutting Back On Screen Time & Intermittent Media FastingThis weekend, we headed over to my mother-in-law's house for a birthday party. We spent about 5 hours outside, and it was amazing. The kids rode 4-wheelers, went fishing, played with cars... and we were just able to enjoy the moment. Not once did I want to grab my ipod or laptop. Not once did I want to sneak indoors to watch television. I didn't need it. I was surrounded by amazing people, and had a wonderful time. And, that little bit of media-free time was amazing. It's good to live hands-free. To watch my kids drive a 4-wheeler downhill faster than what felt "safe". It was good to step away from Facebook, ipods, Instagram, and laptops.
Embracing IMF: 10 Strategies for Practicing Intermittent Media Fasting over on Mark's Daily Apple, I've decided to embark in a media fast myself. I've unplugged for entire days before, but this is different. Instead of fasting whole days, my plan is to simply incorporate periodic abstinence during certain times of the day. So first, I will abstain from using media during these key times of the day:
- While eating breakfast
- While eating lunch
- While eating dinner
- While in bed
- After 10pm
If you're thinking about doing an Intermittent Media Fast (IMF), find times that work for you.
"It’s not about using any particular pattern but simply reining in your media use, practicing periodic abstinence. When we come back to it after the few hours or few days, we might experience a similar sense of up-regulation. Maybe our efficiency is better. Maybe we’re more focused and less distracted. Maybe we find we’re bored with it and don’t want to bother with most of what used to reel us in." - Mark Sisson, Mark's Daily Apple
Fasting From What?
I'll be unplugging from screens. So, there will be
- no television
- no iPods
- no iPhones
- no laptops
- no computers
- no Kindles
- Get Better Sleep - I'm usually on my ipod in bed, right before I got to sleep. I'm hoping that the IMF will help me sleep better through the night.
- Be More Present - By fasting during meal times, I'm hoping to simply focus on being present and undistracted during meals.
- Mentally Declutter - Let's face it, social media can get noisy. Between Facebook, Instagram, Pintrest, reading blogs, blogging, and Reddit, there is plenty of noise online to keep me entertained and distracted. I'm hoping this IMF will help me mentally take a break from all of those things I do to keep myself busy. Hopefully, I'll be able to cut back or eliminate those things that I don't feel are an important part of my life.
- Consume Less Media - I hope I get used to spend less time in front of screens. I hope I start to appreciate more of what exists in the real world instead of on a screen in front of me. I hope to live more by consuming less media.