Today Is the National Day of Unplugging

Do you know someone who is hopelessly addicted to their phones or other electronic devices? Is it you?

Today at sundown, we start the 'National Day of Unplugging'. Everyone is asked to disconnect for 24-hours. Here are some statistics that may shock you and make you think seriously about unplugging for the next 24-hours.

  • Did you know that the average 13 to 17-year-old exchanges approximately 4000 texts per month? That's approximately one text for every six minutes they are awake.
  • Did you know that approximately 53% of people report checking email while they drive?
  • Did you know that 61% of people check their email while on vacation?
  • Did you know that studies show that office workers check email up to 40 times per hour?
  • Did you know that 67% of people check their phone for messages alerts or calls even when there is no indication of a new message or call?
  • Did you know that 75% of people admit to using their phones in the bathroom?
  • Did you know that 43% of people confess to checking email in the middle of the night?
  • Did you know that 35% of people admit to checking their phone before they get out of bed in the morning?
  • Did you know that 38% of people admit checking email at the dinner table?

In a recent questionnaire titled: What Would You Give up to Keep Your Phone'? People said they would give up sex, caffeine, chocolate, exercise, alcohol, and (shockingly) shoes to keep their phones. This is scary.

Here's a test to see if you have a problem. Answer honestly.

  • If you bring your smartphone, tablet or laptop to the restroom, you might have a problem.
  • If you bring your smartphone with you to church, you might have a problem.
  • If your significant other has ever banned you from your smartphone, you might have a problem.
  • If your children or spouse text you while under the same roof to get your attention, you might have a problem.
  • If you have changed vacation plans based on Wi-Fi availability, you might have a problem.
  • If you spend more time on Facebook than you do with actual people, you may have a problem.
  • If you can type text messages faster than you can handwrite the same words, you might have a problem.
  • If you check your email more than one time per hour, you may have a problem.
  • If it disturbs you to the point of losing focus when someone else's smartphone dings and they don't check the text, you definitely have a problem.

If you said yes to one or more of these questions, you have a problem. If you answered all of these questions with a yes and you deny that you have an addiction to your smartphone, you need serious help.

Seriously, though, take the plunge and unplug for 24 hours and see what happens. You may just realize that life outside the house it's not such a bad thing. There is fresh air outside and other people to talk to. You may decide to go fishing or play some basketball. The possibilities are endless. Or, you can stay inside and remain plugged in and follow other people's lives on Facebook. You decide.