Counting Sheep. Yeah Right.
Last Monday, at 4 am, my mind was racing, and I was sick and tired (literally) of not being able to sleep. We were supposed to be slowing it down in Canada, but I found myself day after day addicted to social media trying to promote this damn blog and stressing over losing Instagram followers.
The issue with this is I was missing out on life and actually writing anything new. It sucked. For the life of me, I couldn’t sleep and I couldn’t put my phone down even though I was laying in bed with the lights off and everyone else asleep. I was addicted to electronics.
Not Solo On This One
I was not the only one with this issue. The big girls were watching countless Youtube videos and playing Minecraft all day and night long.
If I did plan something for us to do, they would get off without any issues so that wasn’t a problem. However, if I gave them the option of being on electronics, which I did because I try to follow the “unschooling philosophy” of letting my kids regulate themselves and their activities, they would literally stay on electronics all day and all night.
Minecraft And YouTube Are Taking Over The World
Every time I asked them what they were interested in doing when they grew up, and they both said Minecraft gamers and YouTubers.
Now, I don’t necessarily see anything wrong with that. At least I try and convince myself that I do not see anything wrong with their choices but I am still trying to deschool myself so I am definitely bothered by it at times. Everyone wants their kid to say, doctor or scientist, right?
My biggest issue with it was that their entire world revolved around Youtube and Minecraft. Both girls are very different yet they both wanted the same exact career? That doesn’t make sense. Not only that. They weren’t creating Youtube videos or coding Minecraft games, they were just watching others.
I was slowly losing my girls to these two things and it was so frustrating because I knew they had other interests but they were not exploring any of them. It’s like they could not pull themselves away from their devices without someone (me) making them get off.
I was having this same struggle. Even the toddler often pointed at the TV and yelled for it to be turned on. Flippin’ ridiculous.
We Need A Solution
That night or morning, whatever you want to call it, I was over it. I jumped off social media and on Google and researched electronic addiction. This in itself is funny considering I was looking up electronic addiction while being on an electronic device at 4 am.
There were countless articles talking about the effects of electronic addiction.
This Is Some Weird Science Stuff
Some articles I read mentioned heavy electronic use being able to “rewire” kids brains in order to crave constant stimulation. WHAT THE HECK? I don’t think the issue is just with kids. I am pretty darn sure my own brain has been rewired to the need of constant fast-paced stimulation.
It’s been almost a year since we started this deschooling homeschooling unschooling worldschooling journey. Yes, I listed all of those because I have yet to choose one philosophy.
I have tried to stay out of the way when it comes to my kids’ learning because I believe they are constantly learning with everything they do.
But I can no longer go along with the whole “unlimited electronic use”. I just can’t anymore. It is not working for our family.
I see the frustration the oldest gets when her game freezes or glitches. She literally loses her shit. Shoot… I can’t even sit through a movie without mindlessly scrolling through my various social media accounts. Can you say ridiculous? In all honesty, I have struggled with this all of my life.
I remember my initial move to Austin, TX and how I purposely didn’t buy a TV. However, I found myself addicted to my laptop. I would like to blame it on the whole single parent thing and not really having another adult to talk to in person to occupy my time but that’s not it. It is a literal addiction.
Without getting into the science behind it, because I haven’t looked that deep into it just yet. I do believe that my brain CRAVES constant stimulation. I can’t just sit and think for one second. The constant need for stimulation even affects my reading. I’ll be reading a book and then my thoughts trail off to all types of crap, or I think of something that I just have to look it up right away on my phone. Next thing you know I am on Facebook and then Instagram. It is a never-ending cycle.
I found an electronic detox to be the best option. Different articles laid out steps of what to do in order to accomplish an electronic detox. There are actual camps for adults and kids you can go to in order to detox. Seriously. I shat you not.
I grazed through different articles and decided to take a few tips but I needed to do things the Trippin’ Momma way. To put it simply, do what I want and hope for the best.
We needed to cut down on our electronic use drastically. I decided that in the morning or really in a few hours when the toddler would inevitably wake up, I was going to talk to the girls about turning off all electronics for the day. I didn’t know how they would handle it or really even how I would handle it.
But I figured if we just tried for one day and then went from there it wouldn’t be too bad, right? I also figured we might try and bang our heads against the wall at some point.
The results were absolutely shocking. I mean mind-boggling. So… how do you think it went? Did we try and kill each other? You will have to read the next post here to find out.