Could You Survive Without Technology For A Week?

Imagine yourself going on a run outside on a beautiful summer morning, cell phone in your hand and your music playlist ready to go. You go around the corner and you see a sign stating you are in a “No Tech Zone” and could be fined up to $300 if caught.

Completely caught off guard, you stop and contemplate what you should do? What kind of sign is this and how can this be the law? And who actually placed it there? Recently, San Francisco residents in the Alamo Square area found themselves in this exact situation.

Shortly after people started noticing this “No Tech Zone” sign and questioning if this could actually be enforced, the San Francisco recreation and parks department assured they had not placed it there. However, the sign had already sparked an ideological conversation.

Some residents commented that this would be a great idea and that as a community, more people need to have face-to-face communication. They said it would be great to not feel they can’t interact with others due to a phone being attached to them in some manner and earphones on their heads.

Though the argument can be seen from both sides and many residents felt that it was a ridiculous rule that infringed on their personal liberties. However, the signs were actually posted as part of an art project by Ivan Cash in San Francisco parks “encouraging people to question the role technology plays in our lives and environment.” And it appears that he got people thinking!

But it gives us something to consider: Could you survive a No-Technology Week? For seven days give up all technology outside of what you need to perform your job. Then fill that time with other activities such as, interacting with people, exploring nature or even playing board games with the family to see what new habits can be formed.

Here are the ground rules for home and in the car for the 7 Day No Tech Challenge:

  1. No televisions.No video games, no portable players.
  2. Cell phones can ONLY be used for emergencies.
  3. No computer use at home. Computers may only be used for business and school, preferably at work or school.
  4. No MP3 players or other music players, including exercise activities.
  5. Eliminate use of any other technology that has become a crutch in your home.

At the end of the week you can evaluate to determine the impact it had on you! Was it easier or harder than you thought? Did you prefer the personal interaction with people rather than relying on a text or email message? And most importantly, will you set new grounds rules for yourself—or in essence post your own NO-TECH Zone sign?

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