Lessons From a Week Unplugged

Over Corpus Christi (Fronleichnam), I took a whole week off to stay with our son, his wife and their adorable 4-year-old just outside Hamburg. My goal? To disconnect from the digital world.

Now, I’ll be honest with you. Disconnecting completely wasn’t easy. I did have an hour’s group call with my Chilipeppers and peeked at emails once in a while.

But guess what? Even with some limited online interaction, the week was fantastic. 

The weather wasn’t perfect, but we managed to spend the whole of Saturday outside. We took a trip to the bustling market, did a bit of work in the garden, and then had our very first barbecue of the year.

Instead of sitting in front of my computer and working with clients or planning my regular posts in English, I was busy making birthday party invitations with monster teeth and googly eyes—and I

  • discovered the new surroundings by bike and on foot (my eldest son moved house last year),
  • built elaborate structures with Lego and Duplo bricks (that mysteriously kept collapsing under “unknown” circumstances),
  • read those long-forgotten children’s books out loud (complete with voices that I’m sure would earn me an Oscar in the “Grandparent’s Performance” category),
  • watched “Feuerwehrmann Sam” every evening, and even
  • snatched moments in-between to read the book on the top of my TBR pile*: “The Bloody British: A Well-Meaning Guide to an Awkward Nation.” (Spoiler: it’s hilariously accurate.)

Lessons learned

This week reminded me just how important it is to take a break from technology and enjoy life’s uncomplicated pleasures.

One of the best ways for me to reset and recharge? Spending time with family and embracing the joy of everyday activities. Plus, who knew that monster-themed birthday invitations could be so therapeutic?

What is the best way for you to unwind?

*to-be-read pile

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Foto Christine Sparks

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