We recently returned from a week long vacation, totally unplugged. We road tripped around Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, and Lake Superior. The no cell/no computer designation was partly by choice and partly by circumstance.
We had planned a week of pure vacation and even if we had wanted to check in, there were many places where there was no signal.
But the real signals were indeed many. A signal is simply an indicator that serves as a means of communication. The signals I received were to take this week in, savor it all, breathe, and relax. My mission was to enjoy the beauty of all the places we explored and enjoy the company of my Prince Charming.
That I did.
I also noticed signals. If the gas light came on, we recognized the signal that the tank was getting low and we stopped to fuel up. If my stomach grumbled, I recognized the signal that I was hungry. We ate at delightful places along the way, sampling elk, caribou and other regional fare. If my husband reached out his hand, I recognized the signal to take his hand in mine and give him a kiss.
The world is full of signals. Too often we are too busy “communicating” electronically that we overlook all the simple signals. If we pay attention to the signals of our body, and acted accordingly, our health would improve. Our stress level would improve. Our happiness would increase.
We get signals all the time of what we really need, yet we drown out our inner voice with the chiming of our cell phones and computers and the blare of television.
Whether we were dining at a lovely resort or gazing at a waterfall, I noticed people on their phones. It amuses me that a common sight now is people with their heads down, typing with their thumbs.
My initial judgment of “can’t they just enjoy the ambiance without electronics” faded into “to each their own.” I got the signal from my heart to stop being in other’s people’s business and get back to my own.
My business that week was to get away from it all. We didn’t post the play by play of our adventures on Facebook, and the only twitters and tweets were those of the birds. That was my choice, and I need to respect the choices of others.
We did go to one restaurant way up north that had a sign on the door that it was a cell phone-free zone. I saw one man texting and one guy talking on his cell. The cell phone police didn’t come and drag them away.
It’s good to pay attention to signals. Listen to cues telling you to eat, drink, sleep. Notice the signals of when to move your body. Notice the signals of when to slow down.
If I had had my head down texting, I would have missed the signal telling us that a scenic overlook was ahead, we would not have stopped at the cute roadside store called Fish Out of Water, and I wouldn’t have seen the bear on the side of the road.
Now that I am back home, back in the saddle of electronic communication, I vow to pay attention to all the signals in life, not just the chime of a text or a ding of an email. After a week of being gone, the world had still revolved without me checking email or texting. That to me is a signal that I can go unplugged a little more often.
(Listen to your signals. If you want to feel better, happier, lighter, less stress, Kelly’s joy programs are enrolling now. firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll free 888-637-3563. To get her free ebook “7 Steps to Happy Right Now” go to www.kellyepperson.com.