Family life as we used to know it was already broken in a very high percentage of UK homes caused mainly by the extreme overuse of mobile phones, tablets, PC and video game consoles. However, after the COVID 19 outbreak, things just got steadily worse. School closures and Lock Downs meant that inevitably, everyone and kids in particular spent even more time on their tech products.
This has led to serious addiction amongst the whole UK population but particularly teenagers and indeed pre-teenagers, leading to mental health issues, lack of sleep and concentration, constant online harassment and bullying, drop off in educational performance, anxiety, self-harm and suicidal thoughts. There is also a general lack of exercise and involvement in sporting activities and complete disinterest in normal life in general, leading to kids becoming a physical and mental shadow of their former selves.
Latest findings in the UK Feb 2020 show that over 50% of 10 year olds now own a mobile phone.
Although most devices have apps or other means of limiting use, it can be very time consuming for parents to implement this on a regular basis. Also it can be very difficult to convince each individual child in the family that they are having equal tech break time with their siblings!!
According to the experts involved in Children’s health and wellbeing, bedtime is by far the most crucial time of the day where the whole family should give up their devices in exchange for a good night’s sleep. This is where tech-break really does stand out on its own as a powerful family support tool, helping to reduce family time spent on their favourite tech devices.
However, it is important to note, that tech-break is only part of the solution. It is a vital tool for parents to use in their constant battle against addiction of all things tech, but family communication and interaction is also key.
As a parent/carer, we strongly recommend that you sit down with the family and explain just why everyone needs to spend less time on their devices. Highlight examples of how normal family life has all but disappeared because of extreme overuse of tech and that family members have changed for the worst, with family communication down to virtually zero. Explain the need to bring a healthy balance back to family life without devices being present and let normality return to the family once again.
In your discussions start off by coming to an agreement that all devices must be placed in the tech-break at an agreed time every night. Press the BEDTIME MODE and you have a 10 hour total family tech break. This might be tough at first, but at least everyone has lost the use of their devices together in exchange for a good night’s sleep! After around 25-35 days, you will see with your own eyes, that giving up devices at bedtime will start to happen with much less resistance as everyone gets into a new tech free bedtime routine.
Normality will start to feel like it is coming back into your family life and all your initial hard work and efforts will feel worthwhile. Parents/carers can really add strength to the programme by also giving up their devices overnight and they too will start to feel the benefit of extended time without their mobiles and tablets on a nightly basis.
We also advise taking things a bit further by agreeing at least one family day a week completely device free. One press of the 24 hour button gives you this extended tech break scenario instantly.
For shorter tech break sessions perhaps to allow for a family occasion, meal times or regular breaks for younger family members, just use the hour button, pressing it to your required tech break duration. Using this mode with younger children on a regular basis will get them used to tech breaks before it even becomes an issue and you can even turn it into a fun game by letting them preset the lock out system and then later just before it is due to open, they can be on standby to count down the digital timer to zero when the tech-break door swings open to release their device.
After a period of time, everyone involved will start to get used to and accept breaks from their tech devices as a normal way of life and gone will be the days of having to grapple with the kids to pull a device from their tightly held clutches. Everyone will start to feel the benefit. Family life will start to return to normal with the potential reintroduction of fun days out and fun nights in together watching television, or playing games and just generally interacting and enjoying a healthy life balance once again as a family without devices readily at hand 24/7.
BRING YOUR FAMILY LIFE BACK WITH TECH-BREAK