Technology has become an everyday necessity by today's standards. Tablets, laptops, cell phones, and smart watches—more and more it seems like the only time we are not "plugged-in" is when we are fast asleep. Below are some tips to help reduce screen time and increase family time:
1) Designate screen-free time where phones, tablets, laptops, and video games are off.
2) Keep technology out of the bedroom by creating a charging hub where everyone's electronics--especially cell phones and tablets--remain before heading to bed.
3) Create an evening routine that involves a family-related activity such as game night, bedtime reading, a special family play time. During this time technology is not allowed.
4) Work with your children to come up with a fun bag that has different activities to do on a nice or rainy day. When your children express boredom, have them pull an activity idea from the fun bag. This works especially well if you complete the activity with them.
5) Model by example--refrain from using your phone and other electronic devices during times where everyone is together as a family.
Remember that when implementing a new routine there will be some pushback. A new routine takes about 1-3 months to become a habit.