People: Our Only Relief from Screens

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When I think about how I spend my days being productive, I imagine myself focused, diligent, sharp. Whether it be returning emails, writing a blog (like this one), arranging a new keynote presentation, my eyes are firmly fixed on my laptop screen.

When I think about how I spend my time being “less than productive”, when I am anything but focused, diligent and sharp, I STILL find myself staring at a screen. Maybe I am on a Netflix binge, scrolling through social media sites, or playing a game on my phone (Right now it’s Trivia Crack. I am pretty good), I am still staring at a screen.

(Sometimes, one screen doesn’t provide enough stimulation. Sometimes I’ll multiscreen. The TV will be on and I will also be looking at my phone. The laptop will be open with my phone right next to it. What is wrong with me? I need some relief.)

When I think about the times that I am screen free, I am usually engaged in a conversation, sharing a meal, listening to or sharing a story with an actual person. I realized that my only relief from screens are people. From the strangest stranger to my closest friend, I am thankful for these moments that aren’t hinged on pixels.

How can we find relief from screens? The best answer is people. Find actual people and have actual conversations.

On occasion, I will declare a “Screen-Free Weekend.” During a Screen Free Weekend, I will ride bikes with friends, go see live theatre, take my time over a nice meal with friends. It is a challenge to fill a weekend with activities and experiences that don’t involve a screen, but, man, is it so fulfilling.

So read this blog (on a screen) and challenge yourself to have a “Screen-Free Afternoon/Day/Week”. What can help you fill your time during a SFD or SFW…? People – our only relief from screens.