Reconnect by Disconnecting

Dr. Angela Seabright
Allison Schmuecker

| 3 min read

Young women at a table working on pottery
In a world where smartphones are the norm, does technology help or hinder communication? Due to the internet, people can access unlimited information about each other. While businesses thrive with these advancements, individuals may unknowingly suffer.
Face-to-face interaction is becoming a thing of the past. As a society, we primarily talk through text messages, emails and social media. Instead of meeting in-person, we post photos and express our interest through “likes”—a slippery slope that can affect self-esteem.
Comparison is the thief of joy. Yet, most social media feeds are overrun with beautiful and wealthy public figures. Their perfectly curated profiles show a life the average person will never experience. It’s an unnatural display that’s causing a mental health crisis where people of all ages are overwrought with anxiety and depression.
Here are some tips on how to unplug, refresh and reconnect:
Children’s minds are still developing. Therefore, the effects of social media can be especially harmful. Parents should work to limit children’s screen time and focus on more engaging activities.
  • Family Game Night: Playing board games is a great way to reconnect with the whole family. It’s a fun outlet that employs strategy and requires one’s undivided attention.
  • Go to a Park: Get some fresh air and enjoy nature. Plan a healthy picnic and allow children to run around and explore different play areas.
  • Hit the Beach: Take advantage of the warm weather and head to the sandy shores. Cool off with a dip in a lake or go for a relaxing family swim.
  • Bike Riding: A fun recreational activity that’s also a great workout. Find a scenic trail and check out the sights of a state park or your own neighborhood.
  • Go Camping: Pitch a tent and become one with nature at a campground. Teach children to be self-sufficient by removing the comforts of home (i.e. computer, internet, TV, etc) and embracing the great outdoors.
Adults and Seniors
Eager to spend more time with friends, old and new? Here’s how to reinforce those bonds through leisure activities.
  • Get Coffee: Meet up at your local coffee shop and catch up over a delicious cup of joe.
  • Host a Dinner: Food is a central part of almost every culture. Inviting a friend over for dinner is a communal activity that encourages communication and collaboration.
  • Start a Book Club: Take your love of reading to the next level. Establish a book club, where friends can discuss popular literary titles. Create a schedule and set recurring meetings to stay on track.
  • Work Out: Ask a friend to join you for an exercise class. Or plan weekly runs or walks where you can both unwind and reconnect.
  • Arts and Crafts: Did you know arts and crafts are a proven stress reliever? Creative activities are emotional outlets that can boost your mood and bring people together.
  • Volunteer: Donate your time and resources to local charities. Volunteering is a mutually beneficial experience that strengthens community and encourages gratitude.
For more information on the effects of technology, read these posts:
Photo credit: sanjeri

A Healthier Michigan is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.
No Personal Healthcare Advice or Other Advice
This Web site provides general educational information on health-related issues and provides access to health-related resources for the convenience of our users. This site and its health-related information and resources are not a substitute for professional medical advice or for the care that patients receive from their physicians or other health care providers.
This site and its health-related information resources are not meant to be the practice of medicine, the practice of nursing, or to carry out any professional health care advice or service in the state where you live. Nothing in this Web site is to be used for medical or nursing diagnosis or professional treatment.
Always seek the advice of your physician or other licensed health care provider. Always consult your health care provider before beginning any new treatment, or if you have any questions regarding a health condition. You should not disregard medical advice, or delay seeking medical advice, because of something you read in this site.