Thursday, August 6, 2015

Off the Grid

We ended July with an "off the grid" long weekend in a cottage on the lake in Grand Junction, Michigan, a small town right outside of South Haven.  

I guess my use of "off the grid" is a bit extreme as we did have all of the necessities with the exception of cell phone service.  

Instead of hearing chirps from our cell phones we heard the birds chirping, trees swaying and lake rippling.  Instead of falling asleep directly after catching up with emails and social media updates, we fell asleep to crickets with our mind still and relaxed.  We huddled around the campfire eating s'mores and took advantage of the stars and blue moon through a telescope. 

I enjoyed life as it was intended, and not through an Instagram or Facebook post. I read two books in just a few days. I love reading, and I forgot just how much until I put the cell phone down and there were no longer reminders of the internet buzzing as the background noise of my life. The internet buzzing that I have grown so accustomed to hearing.

The mindless thumbing through social media feeds leads to reconditioning our minds into believing there is so much that we are missing out on when in fact we are missing out on real time relationships with those who matter. Disconnecting from technology leads to reconnecting with loved ones, and that is just what this little trip accomplished.

I didn't mindlessly thumb through my phone in a nervous state of panic when waiting for something or someone. I instead paid attention to my surroundings; the three person band with one person playing a homemade instrument made of an old washboard, the exhausted dog just waiting for belly rubs in the spice market, schools of fish swimming off the dock in the lake and the beautiful views from the Saugatuck dune ride. I not only experienced the present, but also enjoyed the present. I was in the moment and not worried about documenting each moment through a social media post. I was experiencing life which is so much more important.  

I didn't feel particularly burnt out before our time away, but after the little time we were away I felt refreshed and reconnected. 

I plan on unplugging more often because life at its best is happening right in front of you.  

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