Try to imagine a span of time that is 5 years, 4 months long. Got it? Ok. Now, with
that in mind, imagine all of the cool things you could do in that time if you had ONE wish!
For me, so many fun ideas come to mind: Travel, Scuba, Dude Ranch, Safari, Sleep, Inventing,
Playing, my list goes on. But current research is showing that…hold on…yes…the average
person as of 2018 will spend that amount of time – minimally – on SOCIAL MEDIA! Almost 5
and a half years! WHAAAAAT?
Wow! it may seem shocking, but my recent family trip to Maui sure solidified it. I
spent two wonderful weeks with my wife, two kids and my in laws on the beautiful Garden Isle.
While I was not disconnected the whole time, I worked hard to focus on family, fun, being
present and breaking my terrible iPhone addiction to Social Media and more!
This pattern of device connectedness has become our habit, our addiction, our sense of self worth, our way of life. Just a tap, swipe, look, peak, peer and engagement to the almighty digital screen. A 2016 study found that the typical cellphone user touches his or her phone 2,617
times every day, according to a study by research firm Dscout. But that’s just the average user:
The study found that extreme cellphone users — meaning the top 10% — touch their
phones more than 5,400 times daily. I know, mind blowing isn’t it?
I know we are a busy culture: Working, Commuting, Educating, Parenting, Laboring,
Living. But please don’t miss out on what is happening around you!Check this out – while I was
beachin, chillin, family’in, sippin, swimmin and walking (would have been a much more active trip for me, but I am only 8 weeks post spine surgery), I began to notice something. Everywhere
I went, people were attached to a device. On the beautiful white sand beaches, at Luau’s,
in the middle of romantic/quiet restaurants, at pools, on jungle hikes and especially walking on
paths! Yes, I know many people were taking photos, but as I took my daily 4-5 mile walks,
I became lost in the jungle of “DeviceVille”. People were constantly bumping into me, not
looking where they were headed or where they were. There is so much amazingness out there
to see and experience Every. Single. Day. My friends! Just look around you! The ocean was epic.
The waves – spectacular. The waterfalls – glorious. The food and drink – superb. The sharks,
turtles and fish – mind blowing. And of course, the smiles and laughter that erupted from my
children from 6am to 9pm was not only precious, but mood altering and completely life changing.
I’m not trying to preach here my friends, just making a point. 5 years is a long time to
spend when we get only 1 go at it. Our children won’t be around forever, nor will we.
How will you choose to spend it? Toward the end of our trip, my son Braden had an idea.
“Dad, let’s play Hawaiian bird sounds and set up a feeding station for them”. Dude.
Seriously? I was on it. Boom – Braden had the rice crackers, I cranked out the bird tunes,
and within seconds,I felt like I was in the Costa Rican Rainforest. Birds of all kinds,
were everywhere! Just because my epic lil 9 year old had an idea – and I was actually
tuned in to hearing it!
Reconnecting with my family was not only amazing, but necessary. My kids are young
only once, as are we. When we have the eyes, hearts and attention of our loved ones at home,
school, or anywhere else – how do we want them to see us? “Dad, get OFF your phone!” Is
not not a mantra I want to own any longer. I need to own it.
Remember that “Busy” is a choice on how we want to spend our time. It is really a decision
of “I don’t have time for you, something is more important right now”.
Connect my friends. Live life. Smell the ocean. Watch the waves.
Listen to the birds. Look at someone’s beautiful face while chatting. Use “Airplane Mode”
( My man Adam Welcome’s go to). Hold hands. Bump into less people while walking.
Try it yo! For me. It was THE. Best. Thing. Ever!
#dadsasprincipals #momsasprincipals #CelebratEd #JoyfulLeaders #LeadLap