I Use Gadgets to Get Away From Gadgets

It all started so innocently... you traded your trusty flip-phone for a Blackberry. That was the beginning of the end. Now, there's nowhere you aren't findable and connected. Schools are now running "digital detox' on kids, and they're freaking out! Adults are no better. We can't give up our devices. I don't like anyone/anything have this much power over me.

When I stepped out of the tech industry and back into finance, I did so with a big promise to my wife and daughter (then fetus of unknown gender), "I'm going to be much better about disconnecting." Nothing in this world is more important to me than being a good husband and father, and I judged that impossible with my face buried in my phone. I've put a few things in place, and it actually involves using two gadgets to get away from gadgets. Stick with me...

  • Dark Hours - When I walk into our home, my phone goes to my bedside table, and I don't look at it or touch it until a final check before bed.  Playing with Ellie Jayne, dinner, shower (she's "too old for baths"), reading stories and spending time with Sarah are phone-free times for me.
  • Kindle - I read every night. I used to do it on an iPad via the Kindle app, but it was too much temptation. So, I bought a refurb Kindle Paperwhite, and it's excellent.  It's easier on my eyes, and it holds the several books I like to keep going, depending on my mood. The battery life is also pretty outstanding.
  • The Date Phone - I have an old Moto X sitting in a drawer by the front door. It is capable of receiving calls, summoning Uber and taking photos. It has a burner SIM. When Sarah and I go out, we forward our phones, so we can be reached in an emergency. Otherwise, we're stuck with only one another's company. It has a camera, just in case we see Bigfoot eating sushi with Elvis.

What's next? I need to spend less time staring at my phone waiting in lines, in waiting rooms etc.

What about you? Did just reading that give you anxiety?