We all know how obsessed children are with their phones and technology in general. It may seem like pulling teeth to get them away from the computer or to stop playing games on their phones. But what we as parents oftentimes forget, is that we may be guilty of the same thing!
The Allure of Phones
Most adults didn’t have the luxury of cellphones when growing up, or were at least older teens before they got a phone of their own. Having so much information and fun stuff available at your fingertips, it can be hard not to check your phone after every bing or beep. We also know that kids, though, mimic their parents’ actions, which can include how much they’re on their phones. So if you are on your phone as soon as you get home from gathering up the kids, chances are they will be too.
Of course, not every parent is glued to their phone. We all know the work doesn’t end as soon as we step inside our homes, and you may be cooking, cleaning, prepping, and continuing to work while your kid scrolls online and plays games. But if you are conscious of the time you are on your phone, it may help decrease their screen time too.
Limiting Kids (And Your) Screen Time
According to a study conducted by Common Sense Media, parents are spending an average of nine hours watching screens. And this study is not including work hours, where most people may already be spending nearly eight hours in front a screen as well. If you’re thinking there’s no way you’re on your phone for nine hours a day, then keep in mind that this also includes all screens, so TVs, computers and tablets are included.
If you’re thinking you may be spending too much time on devices, don’t worry, it can be far too easy to get sucked into these distractions. And if you are setting time limits on your children’s screen time, you should be limiting yours as well. Even if you at least keep track of the time first, then you’ll know if you’re within a safe zone or spending too much time on them.
There are plenty of relatively quick ways to stay off your phone, and to include your kids too. Cooking can be a fun activity to bring your children into! Mowing the lawn or doing any other landscaping or weeding can take some time. Even grabbing a real book off the bookshelf is a great way to escape without staring at a screen!