We didn't plan it but Megan and I had a "screen free" evening last night.
And it was awesome.
We both got home around the same time and commented on how nice it was outside. We realized that the one perk about daylight savings time is...well...the daylight. So, taking advantage of the extra hours of sunshine, we decided it was the perfect time to take our dog Theo for a walk around the neighborhood. As it turns out, taking a long walk after work is a great way to unwind and rest your brain after a long day of work.
But the night didn't stop there.
When we got back from Theo's walk, we still had ample daylight and warm weather to take advantage of. So we went up to our top balcony, sat in our rocking chairs, and just hung out and watched the sun slowly disappear behind the trees for half an hour.
We went downstairs to start dinner. Typically, our routine is to turn on the TV (normally reruns of The Big Bang Theory) and use that to unwind while we cook (and sometimes while we eat). Last night, the exceptions continued. Instead, I turned on NEEDTOBREATHE radio on Pandora while we prepped dinner. We then proceeded to eat at our actual dining room table, away from electronics.
We've had nights like that before, avoiding getting sucked into the TV until after we've finished dinner. But this night was different. We ended up spending the rest of the evening reading a book (real, paper books) until we decided to go to sleep.
It was awesome. And I highly recommend it.
Megan and I both have jobs where we're always on. We have to be plugged into a screen almost all the time, whether it be a computer, a phone or a TV - and that's not exclusive to 9-5. Being plugged in is what helps us pay the bills.
However, the impromptu break from the enchanting blue light of our devices was a nice refresher. Catching up on reading that I "never quite get around to" was a great change in pace. Keeping my phone on silent and face-down helped me zero in and just focus on what I was reading. Additionally, I slept very soundly that night and woke up before my alarm even went off feeling totally refreshed.
While it's not realistic for us every night of the week, Megan and I both agreed to continue having a couple of designated "screen free nights" every week. I think it'll be great break for our brains and probably breathe some fresh air into our day-to-day life. This isn't a diss to technology (I happen to love tech) but moderation is a good thing for any activity.
What about you? How do you wind down after work during the week?