A Father’s Day Challenge: Join the Disconnect to Reconnect Campaign

Hacking the Holidays

For Father’s Day this year, I’m going to give myself one of the best gifts ever — 24 un-wired hours with my wife and children.

No television. No email. No computer games. No mobile phone. And no complaints.

For Father’s Day 2011, GeekDad is asking you to join with us as a willing participant in the Disconnect to Reconnect Campaign. The event is being promoted by author Phil Cooke, who is challenging dads across the country to disconnect your digital devices for 24 hours and reconnect with your family.

Sounds like a simple enough challenge, right? I mean, it’s a holiday celebrating us: Dads! You’ve got to think that we can fill our daily schedule with enough activities (and a nap, maybe) to keep our minds off our email, our fingers away from our mobile phones, and our eyes of our LCD flat screens. Sure — we can do this! Guys? Hello?

Seriously, geek dads… we can do this. And quite honestly, we should do this. Reading over the press release for Phil’s event, one section jumped out at me and hit me hard:

Remember – your kids watch your behavior more than they listen to your words. And when they see you unable to disconnect from email, text messages and Twitter? You’re telling them that what’s on your phone is more important to you than they are.

So, think about how much time you spend online versus how much time you spend face-to-face with the people you love you the most. And, at the very least, for 24 hours on Father’s Day, think about which connection is the most important to you – the one to the world?

Or, the one to your family?

This is going to be tough. But my family is totally worth it. And what a great day for us to actually “log off” from our digital lives, a day when our families celebrate good ol’ Dad!

Now, I may be able to turn off the digital devices, but it’s going to be very tough to turn off the writer — I’ve made a promise to myself to keep a small notebook nearby to write down the events of my day so I can share them in a follow-up post along with some of my fellow GD contributors. And we invite you to join us.

So… who’s in? Are you willing to share this challenge with your family? Are you willing to sign your name in the comments below, accepting the challenge and pledging to Disconnect to Reconnect?

I’ll be logging off Saturday, June 18th. See you Monday, June 20th. If you call, please leave a message.

For more information about the Disconnect to Reconnect Campaign, visit Phil Cooke.com. If you’re on Facebook, you can also join the group by visiting the Disconnect to Reconnect Facebook page.

In addition to joining us for the event, we’re going to be giving away four copies of Phil’s new book, Jolt! Get the Jump on a World That’s Constantly Changing, to four GeekDad readers (sorry, USA-based winners only), selected at random, who post a comment here committing to disconnect for a day. Last chance to enter is 11:59pm PDT on June 18, 2011. Winners will be selected on Monday, June 20th and announced no later than Friday, June 24, 2011.

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