(Photo print Unplug via Etsy)

“I commit to develop a rhythm of daily rest and weekly Sabbath where I set hours to stop working and unplug from technology and media entertainment, and actively engage activities that are restful, restorative, and celebrative.”

Along with a group of coworkers, I made the above commitment for the next three months. We each are deciding how exactly this commitment will be personally practiced.

For me, I am practicing a daily rhythm of resting from work and technology that begins at 9pm in the evening until 9am in the morning. For those hours, our household will shut down phones, computers, and television (which is actually being moved into a less prominent location of the house). Once a week, on Saturdays, we will observe a Sabbath that is also free from all forms of media entertainment. Instead of filling those times with mindless television, internet-browsing and playing games on our iPhones, we will engage in activities that are restful and life-giving.

While I enjoy various forms of technology on a daily basis, and don’t believe those things are inherently bad, I anticipate many benefits during the next few months as I unplug. My hope is that we as a family will have more room in our lives to be present to God, each other, and those around us. Time normally spent watching television can be spent on talking with each other (go figure!), playing games, and doing things that are actually engaging. I hope to have more time and creative energy to spend on things like reading books, writing, and other hobbies. Maybe I’ll actually play my guitar, which has gathered dust since the spring. During mornings, when I am apt to immediately turn on either my phone or laptop to check email (resulting in anxious multitasking), I will have more peace and enjoyment as I enter the day.

In our age of electronics, media messages, and constant noise, I believe that making this jump into a more unplugged life will be extremely refreshing.

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