I'm now back online (as you can see by this blog post).
I spent April in Europe travelling with my wife, ms 11 and ms 8. The main reason I unplugged was to remove outside distractions. I wanted to immerse myself in the holiday, the experiences that were happening there and then and just spend time with my wife and kids.
So (I hear you all asking), how did it go?
The holiday was great (I'll write a more detailed post on it later and you can see some photos on Instagram (http://instagram.com/sailpip) that I've posted since my return). We spent time in Helsinki, Denmark, Iceland, England, Paris and Singapore. The experience of unplugging was very worthwhile, for many reasons.
The main positive was that there were no distractions, so I had no alternative but to focus my whole energies on the experience around me, both family and cultural. I could not remove myself from the here and now by going off into the twitterverse, nor was I distracted by other tasks like answering questions about work.
Without these day-to-day distractions I had the luxury of spending 24/7 for 30 days with my family, which is near impossible to replicate in our modern busy lives. It is satisfying to know that we could happily spend all that time together and great that my kids got to see their parents working together, solving problems and having fun day in and day out. The time together is something I will treasure as my girls grow up.
I had anticipated some (minor) problems including keeping up with the news, forgetting my dozens of usernames and passwords and being lost without gps. I don't think I missed much in regards to news, we did hear about the death of Margaret Thatcher and about the Boston bombing, I did remember my passwords after 30 days (which was a surprise) and we talked (well my wife did) to the locals when we got lost (which is part of the fun). For the sake of family my wife checked her email regularly and sent them photos and updates rather than postcards and occasionally dropped into her Twitter, but far less than she would at home.
I do feel refreshed, the mental break from the overwhelming amount of information that is forced upon you every day has been invigorating.
I have built deeper relationships with my wife and my kids.
I was totally in the moment.
Finally, I thought I would have time to think, but I was too busy being on holidays, processing events as they happened and planning for the immediate future. Interestingly, since I have been back, my brain has been on overdrive with ideas and thoughts!!
Yes, if you get the chance, unplug.