Soul-Fed Mama: How To Use Technology For Good
I see news articles every day about how detrimental technology is for us. We are increasingly distracted by the “bings bong and beeps” of our social media streams, our children are turning into zombies parked in front of TV sets while us moms tweet about the excellent wine we are drinking, and we all are starting to believe everyone but us is living a life that is easier, less cluttered, and definitely more beautiful.Those are all dangers of modern technology, for sure.And yet.Social media allows me to step back from a frustrating moment and see the humor in it. The world of blogs and forums allows me to connect with women in similar circumstances, where I might not find those people in my immediate community. I can ask a parenting question in the middle of the night and have 20 new perspectives to consider by morning.The internet allows me to take classes on whatever skill I want to learn, without leaving home to do it.Apps on my phone are helping my daughter learn letters and pattern recognition that will help her learn to read, and play games that reinforce morning and bedtime routines that she doesn’t really want to hear from me directly.Photos on my phone allow her to re-live great memories anytime she wants to (I’m really curious what such easy access to photos and videos will do for the memories of children in this generation).Netflix allows me to put on Sesame Street any time I need a break or need my kid to wind down a bit, instead of only once a week, like how I remember watching it when I was a kid.It isn’t all bad.And yet.I do find myself logging on to Facebook when I’m feeling bored or frustrated or lonely. Facebook does nothing to relieve or soothe any of those feelings, it only amplifies them. I often log out feeling worse than when I started.More evenings than I’d like to admit end with my man and I both sitting on the couch together - not in conversation but each reading stuff on our phones. Sometimes we read to each other, but often not.I read other parenting and family blogs and wonder what I possibly have to offer that hasn’t already been covered ad nauseum. By people with prettier houses than mine.So I find myself adjusting the amount of technology in my life all the time. I push it out, I invite it back. I pay attention to how I’m feeling and how we are connecting and communicating as a family and I adjust accordingly.Some days I hide the iPad and others I use it strategically to get through quiet time or dinner preparations. Some days I’m excited buy the world I can find through my iPhone and other days I put that phone on the charger and walk away from it for hours. [Tweet "Technology isn’t bad, but it can have a negative effect if we aren’t mindful in our use of it."]There is no one right way to set limits or rules around it. The right level of technology will vary family to family.Do you know what the right level is for your family? Where do you struggle? I’d love to hear what has and hasn’t worked for you.If you want to try a family technology break, check out this guest post I wrote last summer on how to go about it. Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you choose to purchase a product after clicking through a link I will make a small income from the sale, at no additional cost to you. This income helps to support this blog. Thank you!