I’m not sure how Josh and I stumbled across the notion of low-tech parenting however, when we did we knew it was something we wanted to put into practice. I for one can’t stand to see a child glued to any screen. Besides my personal opinion, all the devices of today are MADE to be addicting! Because of this fact, many leaders in Silicon Valley including the late Steve Jobs either limited their child’s time on devices or ruled them out completely. Let me say that again. Steve Jobs limited his children’s use of apple products because of their addictive qualities. Read more about that in this great New York Times article (https://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/11/fashion/steve-jobs-apple-was-a-low-tech-parent.html?_r=0).
Now before you ask, “how do you become a low-tech parent in a digital era?” I will say that Josh and I know our daughter will be exposed to technology. There’s no way to escape that. Our goal is to not have a two-year-old who is addicted to an iPhone. Here are three steps we took to achieve a low-tech household.
Step One: Delete Social Media.
It may seem hard to delete social media at first but trust me IT IS EMPOWERING! The moment you stop worrying about what everyone else is doing you are free and you can focus on achieving your own goals. Social media is also the number one reason we are on our phones taking selfies or checking our phone to see what’s going on. Blah.
Step Two: Use a Camera.
Of course we want to capture every moment of our young one’s life! Would you rather shove a phone in your baby’s face or a camera? Whichever you chose, that’s what they’ll be reaching for in the near future. Remember phones are addicting, pick it up to capture a special moment and the next thing you know, you’re responding to emails and texts. Just saying.
Step Three: Designate Tech Time.
I’m aware its 2017 and most likely you don’t live in a cave. Most all of us have at least 3 high-tech items we use daily. Designate a time for those things. Is there one day a week you want to watch a movie with your family? Do it! Respond to text messages after your child falls asleep – people will understand. Find the healthy balance that works for you and your family and enjoy the personable, warm, and fun qualities that come with low-tech parenting.
Once you implement these three steps you’ll find a host of time to play and do other non or low-tech activities with your child. Remember your baby is watching you and learning everything from you. If you are constantly using phones, tablets, TV etc. they will want to as well – and they may not be able to stop.
Note: There is NOTHING WRONG with being a high tech parent – this was written for like-minded people who enjoy the endearing qualities of low-tech living.