Some days I feel old and like I can barely keep up with the pace of a giga-speed generation. With new technology changing how we experience life and the ever reaching signal of our cell towers, we rarely find places that we are completely disconnected.
I grew up in the 70’s and 80’s where we kept time with the sun and made sure that we never ventured beyond the range of our moms shout for dinner! On the rare occasion we did go outside the sphere of her influence, we would set up intermediate repeaters (aka friends) that could hear and recognize her shout for us and relay it on to within our earshot.
Personally I believe that the more “technologically advanced” we become, the more critical it is for us to get out and disconnect from time to time. Don’t hear me wrong, I love my gadgets. I have my fitbit to track the steps I take, a smart phone to keep me in touch with loved ones while traveling around the world, a computer to write on and surf the internet, I have wireless headphones to listen to my Ipod, A GPS to help guide me to my destination and a tablet to read my favorite books on. Not to mention the UV light to purify water and battery packs coupled to Solar Chargers to keep everything charged and operating!
WOW, sounds like a complete electronics catalog, I may need therapy!
I’d like to make a plea to all my fellow adventures and their families. Try some time this holiday season to spend some time together – unplugged. Get away from it all, from the rings and vibrates and constant chatter. It may be awkward at first but give it time to feel normal. If you can’t get away from the reach of your cellphone provider than simply shut them off and leave them behind.
Go on a long hike in the woods without a camera. Go camping without all of your connected gadgets to keep you entertained. Stay in a country cabin without the internet!
I will even go so far to promise you that your voicemails won’t disappear, your emails will still be legible, and your friends won’t drop you from facebook. You will however miss a few selfies and may not be able to prove the you even existed for those couple days.
You may surprise yourself and learn a thing or two about yourself and each other.
Yes your kids will complain, and maybe you will even suffer from some form of withdrawal, but I believe that it will prove worth your effort to make a human connection with the people you love the most.
From all of us at The Outside Voice we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and hope that you were able to #optoutside!!