Too often the scenario around many dinner tables goes something like this: everyone with a phone in one hand and a fork in the other, totally focused on screens, largely ignoring what’s going on around us. This Christmas, why not commit to doing a digital detox instead? Ditch the phone, ignore the emails, turn off the notifications, and discover how to reconnect with loved ones and create festive memories. Here are four ways to do just that.
1. Go cold turkey
How much of your Christmas Day is spent answering text messages, sending festive emails, or replying to social media notifications? From text messages to Messenger, WhatsApp, Instagram and other social media, it can be hard to ignore the urge to reply right away.
This year, to avoid feeling guilty about ignoring incoming messages and notifications, try turning off your device for the day – or even assigning an hour or two at the end of the day to catch up on messages if you really can’t do without them. That way you’ll stay focused on the important part of your day without any distractions: spending time with family and friends.
2. First to give in, washes up
For many families, Christmas is that one time of year when everyone gets together to share a meal, conversation and festive fun. Even those who may have to travel far, generally make the effort. Yet so often we’re distracted by our phones and miss the opportunity to connect with those around us.
One suggestion would be to make mealtimes a phone-free zone. All phones get placed out of reach and are strictly off-limits during meals. As an extra incentive, make it a condition that the first person to grab their phone cleans up!
3. Go out instead of online
Often the temptation to sneak a quick peek at emails or reply to just one message can be too much and we cave in and grab our phones. And that usually triggers everyone to do the same! But that special time after you’ve enjoyed a festive meal together is a great time to reconnect.
So if your first instinct after completing a meal is to reach for your phone, plan an offline activity instead: Go out for a walk, set up a board game, or just get out into nature. It’s a great way to work off those extra Christmas treats too.
4. A more mindful approach
Certainly our 24/7 online connectivity has its advantages. Just being able to connect with those who are far away and unable to travel at this time of year can help bring us all closer together. Because our phones are such an integral part of our lives, the idea of going without them – even just for a few hours - may for some be unrealistic.
But taking a more mindful approach to how we use our phones and really paying attention to what it is we’re spending time on when online, can help us reduce mindless scrolling and those less-satisfying forms of online engagement. At the same time, freeing ourselves from distraction leaves more time to focus on connecting in-person.
This year, the team at Mortgage Express wishes you everything of the best for a fun-filled and fabulous festive season. We look forward to reconnecting with you in the new year and helping you achieve your home ownership dreams for 2022.
While all care has been taken in the preparation of this publication, no warranty is given as to the accuracy of the information and no responsibility is taken by Finservice Pty Ltd (Mortgage Express) for any errors or omissions. This publication does not constitute personalised financial advice. It may not be relevant to individual circumstances. Nothing in this publication is, or should be taken as, an offer, invitation, or recommendation to buy, sell, or retain any investment in or make any deposit with any person. You should seek professional advice before taking any action in relation to the matters dealt within this publication. A Disclosure Statement is available on request and free of charge.
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