Unplugged: How a family changed its life with a weekly tech-free day

Tiffany Shlain loves technology. She’s “totally addicted” to it. She revels in all the information and communication always at her fingertips.


Except from Friday nights until sundown Saturday –because once a week her family makes a ritual out of turning off all their screens – TVs, cell phones, computers – and focusing on each other and the present moment.


Shlain,  a filmmaker and founder of the Webby Awards, tells the story of what she calls her Technology Shabbat in a five-minute video she made for AOL.


Her family has been holding unplugged Saturdays for three years, and she says it has changed her life.


“Taking one day off from technology a week, I feel so much more grounded and balanced,” she says in her video. “I feel like a better mother, wife and person.”


She says her tech-free day is in the spirit of the weekly holy days that many religions keep, from Jewish Shabbats to Christian Sabbaths to the Moslem Friday holy day.


“Since we unplugged on Saturdays, our Saturdays have been like mini vacations; slow living that we savor like fine wine,” Shlain said. “We garden, we take bike rides, we do arts project. We’re just present with the people right in front of us.”


See Shlain’s entertaining and often amusing video here:

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