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We can't escape technology. But we should manage our time on it. Professor Maggi Savin-Baden shares some tips
In an age where everything moves faster and faster have you noticed how time can just slip away?
You get up, have quick look at Facebook or answer a few emails and before you turn around it's lunchtime!
If you're reading this, the chances are that you're ‘digitally tethered’ – permanently attached to some kind of technology.
Being digitally tethered is not actually as bad as much of the media portrays, but it can result in lost time and time we do not even realise is lost. Whether it is your time or family time, it is precious and we need to use it well.
We need to think about how digitally tethered we are and make space for people, and perhaps even God. Here are a few tips on how to do this:
1. Manage your screen time
Decide how much time you want to spend on screens each day. This includes phones, tablets, laptops and TVs. This is not easy but it's worth it. It makes you consider whether you want to watch an hour of drama or spend an hour on Facebook per day…
2. Have cut off times for your internet
You can programme your wifi to start and stop at specific times. Being internet free from 7pm to 7am for example might mean you get a bit more conversation over dinner and the breakfast table.
3. Keep computers out of bedrooms
Whether it is you, or your young people, having computers in the bedroom has been shown to do more harm than good, and can effect our sleep patterns. Find different spaces in your home to do homework, video chatting or dealing with emails. Make sure everyone can see what everyone else is doing, it is safer.
4. Consider a digital detox
Decide to have one day a week or one weekend a month that is technology free. Go out without your phone, use a map instead of a satnav, play board games and invite friends to a technology free barbecue.
5. Do technology together
Most of what I have suggested already is about ‘untethering’ from technology, but doing technology together is enriching. Go geocaching, play games together or try the latest fad such as Pokemon-Go and see how many levels you can get up to as a family in one day.
Professor Maggi Savin-Baden is the author of Rethinking Learning in an Age of Digital Fluency (Routledge).
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