As I’m writing this, it’s Sunday evening, and I am just returning from a family trip to Anna Maria Island, a peaceful getaway off of Florida’s Western coast. We gathered there—my husband, kids, cousins, and extended family—to celebrate my cousin’s birthday. I have loved my cousin all of my life. You see, she was super instrumental in helping me find my own way, and giving me a sense of belonging that I could not find elsewhere.

Picture this: I’m with my family at this exquisite beach. We have an entire weekend ahead of us to talk and eat and walk and celebrate and sit in the sun too long. And how did I kick it off? By frantically (and repeatedly) running up to my room to try to connect to wifi.

After approximately 24 hours of this, my son lovingly suggested that perhaps the spotty Internet in our condo was a sign for me to… UNPLUG. With that one word, I felt an entire weight lift off of my shoulders. You mean I was allowed to put away my laptop and enjoy the moment? It’s almost embarrassing that I didn’t just plan to go into the weekend that way, but it didn’t even cross my mind until it was the only option.

From that moment on, I was able to be 100% fully present and immersed in my time with my loved ones. My conversations were richer because I wasn’t distracted by looking at my phone. I spent hours in the water without thinking about who could be trying to reach me or what email I needed to answer.

I remembered how much I love to BE with people.

There was a lot that I got out of this short weekend, but the biggest takeaway was to remember to unplug. In-person connection is powerful and beautiful and so very rewarding, and that can easily get thwarted by too much technology. So, for the rest of the summer, I am committing to unplugging at least one day a week.

I love to experiment. Let’s see what impact it has on my life.  How about you? Would you like to try too?

Care to join me in unplugging? Comment below and tell me what impact unplugging might have on your life.

  1. Dear Joanne,
    What a lovely reminder to us all. I am so grateful that I am more unplugged than I am plugged so I appreciate your sense of enthusiasm. As a student of Isadora Duncan dance technique, I find that maintaining my focus on culture, art, and dance revives the dullness that comes from our dense, static world of technology! Add a healthy raw diet, and the mytho-poetic realm can keep the spirit vibrant, despite the illusive physical realms. So glad you have a lovely angel in your family to remind you to unplug! Sincerely, Pamela

    1. It sounds like you are grounded in great stuff, Pamela. Thank you for sharing your methodology. It seems we share many of the same interests. And yes, Pamela! I am grateful too!

  2. TOTALLY LOVE THIS BLOG POST!!! You have captured EXACTLY what I’ve been feeling for the past several months. I look up from my computer screen sometimes and wonder – ‘When was the last time you spent a day AWAY from this thing?’ Thank you so much for reminding me how vital it is to foster the relationships I have in my life and realizing the huge benefits it can have on my overall health.

    1. I’m so glad it resonates with you Lysa. It’s so easy to get sucked in. I look forward to hearing how you spend your “unplugged time”.

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