We all live in a technology filled world and there is no way of escaping it. However, it is important to implement a no phones rule at the dinner table to focus on your family and what is going on right in your own home.
You are probably thinking to yourself that it sounds crazy to have a no phones rule. And I have to admit, for many of us it is hard to get off social media and put down the phone any time of the day.
However, on the other hand, many family relationships are truly suffering because of this. Without quality time spent bonding as a family it is impossible to create the important connections needed in a family unit.
Fortunately, by implementing this rule at the dinner table you can take one important step towards getting closer to creating this irreplaceable bond.
The Power of the Dinner Table
In an era where we try to maximize every minute we have, it can be difficult to find time to actually sit down and enjoy the simple things in life.
For many people who grew up in the ’70s and ’80s there was a true purpose behind the dinner table. The dinner table was the one time during the day that brought the entire family together.
As we have gotten busier and our lives have been infiltrated by technology, this tradition is slowly dying.
And that makes it more difficult to connect with our families. Think about the last time you actually sat down with your family and ate a meal together without someone being on their phone or tablet.
Can you even think of the last time? Hopefully you can, but many times Thanksgiving is the only occasion that everyone can get together to eat and celebrate without any technology, at least during the meal itself.
And this one day a year meal creates a yearning inside us for that true connection on a daily basis. And as simple as it is, the dinner table is the one place that can bring us together.
The dinner table is where memories are made, stories are shared, and the family bond grows strong.
It is the place of great food, laughs, and sometimes even tears. However, this deep connection cannot take place if everybody is preoccupied by being on their phone.
When each member of the family unit is looking at a device during dinner, these precious memories don’t happen. The stories don’t get shared and the laughs don’t take place.
So how can we solve this?
Implement a No Phone Rule
By implementing a simple rule you can bring back the laughs. You can bring back the memories and bring your family together.
The “no phone at the dinner table” rule is a simple fix to deepen the connection with your family. The rule is simple. For the 30-90 minutes the family is at the dinner table, nobody can bring out a device.
No cell phones, no tablets, and no computers. When you limit devices at the dinner table you are setting an environment that helps promote connection within the family.
Technology has its time and place, but the dinner table is not one of them. The dinner table is a sacred place – not one for technology.
It is a place of love and laughter, not social media and text messages. The dinner table is a time and a place to be present in the moment. It is a place where you can truly bond with those who you love most.
This can only happen if you eliminate devices. There can be no wavering in this rule and the only exception is for emergencies. However we all know that this is easier said than done.
How to Implement the Rule
However, making this change might be difficult. Many of us bring our devices to the dinner table without even thinking twice about it.
As we are shoveling food into our mouths, we often use our other hand to scroll through social media aimlessly. We do not open our eyes or ears to what is right in front of us, and therefore cannot see or hear what we are missing.
So this rule must be implemented to improve the connection between your family members. But how do you do this?
The Implementation Process
Start by bringing everybody in the family together. Explain why you want to implement the rule and ask for family members to buy in. This would be the optimal way for it to happen, without any resistance.
However, most parents probably realize that this might be an uphill battle. Implementing the no phones rule most likely will need to take a bit of directness.
The second way you can do this is by being very blunt. Every single time somebody brings out their phone, you make them put it away. While this method will work in the short term, it can cause some conflict.
You have to be adamant. However, this can be exhausting and lead to frustration. However, don’t worry, there is another way that can be extremely effective!
Lead By Example
When it comes time for dinner pull out a basket or designate an area away from the table where you will lead by example and put away your phone.
Place your device in the designated area and simply sit down at the dinner table. You will notice that the first couple of times that you do this nobody will even notice.
However, if you do this every single night, family members will being to see the change. They will notice that you are interacting and bringing up more conversation at the table.
They will eventually notice how you are not on your phone and hopefully they will follow suit. If not, start in small increments and insisting the no phones rule one day a week.
It makes most sense that the first day to implement this new family process is on Sundays. No phones at the dinner table for your Sunday supper.
Then give it a week or two, and implement another day. Keep working until you have developed a rule that works for your family. Even one or two days a week is better than none.
The No Phones Rule Creates Results
When you eliminate technology from your dinner table, you will see the results. Furthermore, your entire family will benefit.
Your conversations will be more meaningful, you will find yourself actually enjoying dinner together, and you will want to keep coming back.
Additionally, you will notice your family connection deepens. As a result of the no phone rule, you will become a stronger family unit.
Trust begins to grow and your love for one another deepens. And you only have a limited amount of time in life to achieve this.
However, you have to stick to the rule in order for it to work. You have to set the example and you cannot waiver.
By staying consistent and keeping technology away from the dinner table you will see results. You’ll see how your family adjust to this and how much they will actually enjoy dinner time spent as a family.
Finally, you will set the example for other families. Because you have implemented the no phone rule, others will take notice. They will notice how tight your family is and how much better dinner is because of it.
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