National Day of Unplugging

What a great idea! Sign me up!

On the first Friday in March, National Day of Unplugging kicks off a 24 hour period from sundown to sundown, to unplug, unwind, relax and do things other than using today’s technology, electronics, and social media.

The Day of Unplugging was created by Reboot, a nonprofit Jewish community that was originally established in 2003. It is now under the leadership of the Unplug Collaborative, a nonprofit organization that supports educators, leaders and organizers who want to see their communities elevate human connection over digital engagement.

According to Pew Research, the typical American family contains approximately 5 connected devices. Media, friends, entertainment, education, work, and more are all at our fingertips. The amount of information available to us is at an all-time high and the amount of connectedness goes with us everywhere. And during this past year and into the first 2 months of 2021, we all have relied on technology so much more. Disconnecting or unplugging from our devices offers us an opportunity to reset. To destress. To simplify, renew and refresh ourselves. 

Can I really tune out for 24 hours? I say, yes you can! Yes, it is a scary thought for some. We rely so much on our devices. However, we all can benefit from detaching.

Allow me to share an experience I had when I was forced to unplug. It was March 6, 1992. I remember it all too well. The Michelangelo virus totally erased my work computer data upon booting up in the morning. The virus, named after the famous renaissance painter who shared the same March 6th birth date, was a pre-internet era, first ever public malware scare in history. This was before I had the opportunity to back up all my files. Everything was gone! I felt it was a sign. I went for some fresh air, thought about what happened, and felt I needed to resign from my position. I felt lost, disconnected, and I feared I would not recover. My chairman at the time, who remained calm, recommended that I take some time off, reconsider and advise him what I needed to rebuild everything. And that is exactly what I did. With a strategy and game plan and the people that could assist in rebuilding my world, we were able to recover. We also put in security Best Practices company wide to avoid any future issues. (For I later learned, my system was not the only one impacted)!

That experience profoundly impacted my relationship with technology. Yes, we depend on it. However we need to not become totally reliant 24/7. There is more to life and living.

Practicing self care and detaching is important for me, for you, for everyone. Therefore, I am marking my calendar to unplug from sundown on Friday, March 5 through Saturday, March 6th.

I will spend the time Friday evening practicing yoga, doing some reading and getting a great nights sleep. On Saturday, my husband and I will hike and run and enjoy the outdoors, especially time on our beloved beaches and trails.  Perhaps some gardening is in order too. The options are endless. Clean a closet, rearrange your cabinets, clean out what no longer serves you. Go hiking, cycling, have a picnic, walk the dog. Smile (through your mask) and make eye contact with those you encounter. Say hello.

So as you consider unplugging March 5-6, sundown to sundown, put it into perspective. It is only for a day. One day that will give you so much more.

Trust me.

With Light and Love and to an inspiring, enlivening and enriching Day of Unplugging!

Karen

 

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