Could you go a week without your phone? I gave it a go on my recent family holiday to Queensland! How do you think that went?
If you follow me on the socials you will know I recently took an 8 day hiatus from work and the socials. Plugged in 24/7 and working 7 days a week throughout covid and my phone telling me I'm averaging 7 hours a day of screen time WTF! I was beyond ready!
It was a much needed break! But the million dollar question ... What was it like going a week without my phone/"bestfriend"? Especially from the girl who can't even get dressed without checking the weather app.
The anxiety of not having my phone was initially overshadowed by the realisation on the way to the airport that I left my driver's license at home. Thankfully we were only 30 minutes down the road. ARGHHH!! We do a U bolt, drive within the "speed limit" retrieve said licence and make haste to the airport, arriving with two minutes to spare 💁🏻♀️
As an added twist, I made the kids leave their Ipads at home too so we could all have some techno free time. Honesty, if I was going to be #unplugged, I was bringing others along for the ride. My husband did keep his phone so we could call home. A couple of times my Insta addiction got the better of me and I scrolled through his Insta feed to give me the good stuff! As it turns out, he is heavily into Plastering pages, bodybuilding, motorbikes and follows “lawn porn”…. A page dedicated to grass (yep, that’s a thing!)
I had convinced myself that I'd be an anxious mess without my phone. So, imagine my surprise when in the first couple of days I felt the tension drain away from my forearm, thumbs and neck. Along with all that goodness, my eyes no longer felt sore and strained and like I was in constant squint. I did not miss it. It sounds so cliche and a bit corny but I did feel more present and instead of losing 30-40 minutes scrolling the gram, I filled in my spare time with walks on the beach (without a podcast to distract my thoughts 😅) and a good book.
I had a bunch of questions about where we stayed and what we did with the kids so here's a little recap..
Where we stayed On recommendation from a few friends we stayed at Turtle Beach Resort. I would warn that it is quite dated, but in terms of location and facilities (the splash park and pool [in particular]) and the large spacious apartment, I would recommend it to anyone with young kids (mine are 8 and 10). We were lucky enough to have a room with a patio across from the splash park….
It has its own café with good food, coffee and cocktails. Turtle Island is a 4 minute walk to the beach, 10 minute drive to Pacific Fair and 15 minutes to Surfers Paradise, Cavill Ave.
HOW WE GOT AROUND. Ok this is the best… We decided to surprise the girls and use a Limousine transfer (another recommendation from a friend) from the airport to our resort. It was… GET THIS it only cost $40 more than using the airport transfer bus so we thought why not? We thought we were so cool and the surprise would impress the girls and make them think their parents were rock stars…. Turns out we were wrong! Apparently it was SOOO embarrassing, my 10 year old actually cried when we told her it was a 2 way trip. #parentfail We thought we could use Ubers to get around, but after spending $40 on the first day we looked for another option and found it was cheaper to higher a car. I would highly recommend that.
What did we do? EVERYTHING! Remember I'm phone free and a work-a-holic without any work to do, so, I was determined not to get bored. Some of the highlights: Beachtime Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk -A 1.5km walk through and above beautiful rainforests. The 300 meter bridge that soars 30 meters above the rainforest Scarier then the Scooby doo ride at Movieworld!
Cavill Ave -It's not a trip to Queensland without walking around Cavill Ave. I highly recommend Ripley's Believe It or Not museum! Pacific Fair - OMG! Im not really excited by shopping centres but this is NEXT LEVEL!
We chose 2. Dreamworld and Movieworld. Being May and not school holidays the queues were short! But, most of the large rollercoaster were closed for maintenance. My kids are 8 and 10 and wouldn't go on those rides anyway. So, for us this was a WIN, WIN! We did the Scooby Doo rollercoaster 4 times. 🤢
Holiday Shelley is so much fun! I didn’t want it to stop! We decided on the last day to go parasailing. I went up with Ivy and Amelia and we floated 400ft above the water… Again 🤢 But in the spirit of trying to keep everyone calm I hung on tight and ‘pretended’ I wasn’t about to vomit.
There was a lot of downtime. My favorite moments of the trip were just hanging poolside while the kids swam. I took a couple of great books. I haven’t made time to sit down and read a book in forever and I forgot how much I loved it. I didn’t realise how often I use my phone to fill every spare second that I had. Anytime I sat down I would reach for my phone instead of just chilling. So instead, I found myself starting conversations with my Kids (or breaking up their fights…. Holidays are not all fun and games) or we would just go for a walk or read.
So did I get home and plug back in…. You bet I did LOL!
I have come to the realisation that my phone makes it impossible to switch off and it is a constant distraction and the cause to my constant feeling of overwhelm.
So I have set some boundaries. I have started turning it off for chunks of time throughout the day and in the evening I make sure I’m switched off by 7pm. I will be leaving it at home when we have weekends away…. You can definitely have too much of a good thing and a bit of time apart really did me good.