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    5 Ways To Avoid Technology Addiction

    5 Ways To Avoid Technology Addiction

    Let me start by saying, we’re ALL guilty of this. I don’t know about you, but having Google in the palm of my hand has made me feel like my knowledge is UNLIMITED. That’s a powerful feeling, people. I hate when I am pressed with a question that I don’t know the answer to. With the use of my iPhone in hand, it takes me a few short moments to answer the world’s most perplexing questions- “Siri, do toilets flush counter clock-wise in Australia?” They were right when they said, “knowledge is power!”  However, in my quest for unlimited knowledge, it is becoming more and more clear that the grasp that technology has on me is quite a big one.

    Just like you and everyone else I know, when I get a notification that I have another “like” on my Facebook picture, or a text message comes through, every inch of me needs to check and see who liked what or what was that text was about. I can’t think of anything else but what is on that phone! It’s like the phone is calling my name, “Ashley!!!! Look and see what I have for you…You need to look at me!”  I start to itch, feening for a hit of tech. The only thing that satisfies it is if I stop what I’m doing, pick up my phone, unlock my screen and check it.

    We may not be doing our deeds in dark alleyways or curled up with heated spoons in seedy motels. Instead, we are getting our fix out in the open and everyone around us is doing the same thing. So, is it really a problem? Let me ask you this, how many times have you gone out to dinner to find everyone around you nose deep in their phones? How many times have you and your family been guilty of doing the same thing? The answer is probably more than we would like to admit. We always have an excuse as to why we need our phones with us at all times- “I’m waiting for this really important email from work.” “The kids are with the babysitter, what if something happens?” I know this is hard to believe, but there was a time when emails weren’t answered at all hours of the day and kids were left alive and well with the babysitter. The world didn’t end by not having a mobile device on you! I know, crazy, right?!

    I could go on and on and show you all the stats that mental health professionals are coming out with on technology abuse. I could even say how technology is negatively affecting our children and so forth. However, I’ll just keep it simple and urge you to just look at your day. If you are getting the “itch” when you get a little notification on your phone, you’re addicted to your technology. So, the question is, how do we break the addiction? Here are 5 things that we have found helpful in our household. Just to be clear, we are NOT mental health professionals. We are just every day, regular people who are trying to break our addiction to technology. For the record, my husband is more addicted to his phone than I am mine, but I am working on him.

    1.) Have a no technology rule at the dinner table.

    We know that life is hectic and that regular family dinner time may be a dying fad, however when your family does decide to gather, make sure to institute a “no technology rule” at the dinner table. Leave your phones in the car when you are out to dinner. Treat date night the same way. If you do have to bring your phone with you for whatever reason, the person who looks at the phone the most must pay the bill at the end. The family dinner table is an important pastime that we need to bring back to the forefront. Dinner time should be where everyone talks about their day, what they have going on in the week and anything in between. It is the time where we re-connect as a family and the only way to do that is if we put down the phones, turn off the TVs and talk with each other…FACE TO FACE.

     

    2.) Keep your phone out of your bedroom.

    Using your phone as an alarm clock is not an excuse to have it in your bedroom. They have these things that are called alarm clocks…They have numbers on them, tell time and you program them to go off when you need to get up in the morning. Look them up, they are pretty incredible. Bringing your phone into the bedroom causes A LOT of issues. One-your sex life goes down and no one wants that. Two-you don’t just use your phone as an alarm clock, you use it to play Candy Crush or surf Facebook which overstimulates you and makes it harder to fall asleep. All things that are not good for you. The last thing you should be doing before you go to sleep is kissing your spouse, not checking Instagram.

     

    3.) Limit your time on your smartphone when in line or in the bathroom.

    This may come as a shock to some people, but it’s ok to be bored. Think of when you were a kid in school. When you were bored, you daydreamed. You were able to think up the most fascinating things. Channel your inner 10-year-old when you’re in line waiting for your Starbucks, or better yet, strike up a conversation with a stranger, be neighborly. People watch-hopefully not in the bathroom but in line at Starbucks-and make stuff up about them. Use your brain to entertain yourself. Break the knee-jerk reaction of reaching for your phone when you’re bored of something and start relying on your imagination, you’ll be surprised by how much fun it is.

     

    4.) Disable notifications on your smartphone.

    If you don’t have something that goes off causing the “itch”, then you won’t have the need to have your “fix”. After all, you wouldn’t pour an alcoholic a glass of wine and give it to them, treat your addiction to technology the same way. Turn off all notifications, including text messages. If someone is trying to get in touch with you, they will call you. Give yourself “tech checks” where you allow only a few times a day to check social media or your text messages. Find other things to do instead of scrolling Twitter- like reading a book or enjoying a game with the family. Disabling notifications won’t cause you to constantly check your phone, in fact, it allows you to ignore it, relax and forget about it.

     

    5.) When all else fails, use technology against technology.

    The beautiful thing about technology is that there is something for EVERYTHING, including breaking your tech addiction. There are multiple apps out there that track the amount of time you spend on your phone and your time on social media. Download one and start seeing how much time you are spending on your phone. Give yourself a daily limit and if you hit that limit, unplug and put your phone away until the next day. We use “Moment for Apple.” It tells you how much you’ve been on your phone and locks it when you go over your daily screen time limit- giving you no choice but to put your phone and other devices away.

    Look, we get that technology isn’t going away anytime soon. The last thing we are is a bunch of hippies that think we should unplug from the World completely. But we can’t deny the fact that there is a problem. Prioritizing the importance of technology over anything else in life is just a recipe for disaster. Hopefully, you found these tips and tricks helpful so you can focus on something other than the “itch”.

     

    Much love,

    Rehab Gaming USA

    My Partner And I Created Card Games That Help “Rehab” The Art Of Conversation

    My Partner And I Created Card Games That Help “Rehab” The Art Of Conversation

    How We Came Up With Rehab.

    About 6 years ago, my boyfriend, James Schlimmer, had his best friend and his wife over for drinks. At the time, the friend and the wife were having some communication issues. James realized that the night ahead was going to be awkward and stale if his friend and his friend’s wife weren’t on good terms. So what did he do? He broke out a legal pad and a deck of playing cards. On the pad of paper, he wrote down 52 open ended questions that corresponded to the cards on the table. Each “game player” had to pick up a card and answer the question that matched on the pad.

    As the night went on, James’ friend and his friend’s wife were opening up those lines of communication. At times even, both of them would reach over and touch the other on the arm or kiss on the cheek. By the end of the game, the wife said “Wow, I feel like I just went through Rehab, you know, couples therapy.”

    The idea of the game stuck with James and it wasn’t until he met me (Ashley Chaffee) that we took that idea and made it into a tangible reality thus the birth of Rehab Gaming USA™ and our first game; Rehab-a couples release™.

    Here’s the skinny on our games.

    In a society that is controlled by smart phones and instant gratification, we have lost sight of the importance of face to face communication. Whether it is communication with your partner, family, or friends, we feel more comfortable expressing our thoughts behind a keyboard and screen instead of verbalizing our ideas in person. We created Rehab Gaming USA™ to address these issue. Our card games are designed to help “game players” focus on communicating with each other in a non-intimidating way by asking fun, serious, and sometimes silly questions. Thus ‘rehabbing’ the art of communication and getting back to basics.

    Rehab-a couples release™, is a couple’s card game that is designed to promote genuine interaction and entertainment between couples. A couples release™ can be played one on one for date night, or in a group setting. The game is 100% PG rated so feel free to play it with the in-laws or when your adult children bring over their significant other(s). The game asks relevant questions that were created by us, a real life couple, that allows each player to discuss topics that our partners want to hear. The game is guaranteed to bring you closer and help spark the conversations that get lost in the normal day to day tasks.

    Why this game is so relevant? We had a lady buy our deck, she has been married for 55 years and came back and told us that after playing with her husband, they remembered why they fell in love. We are also a lot cheaper than couples therapy. In all seriousness, we want couples to open those lines of communication and get closer.

    65% of Marriages End in Divorce...What do you have to lose?

    65% of Marriages End in Divorce...What do you have to lose?

    NAPLES, Fla., Jan. 10, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Couples across the U.S. are discovering the secret to falling even more in love (or back in love) with each other. Want to know what it is? A simple, yet effective card game, called Rehab-a couples release.

    About six years ago, real estate executive James P. Schlimmer of Naples, FL, needed a way to help his best friend through some marriage troubles—he and his wife were struggling to communicate healthily and productively. Schlimmer came up with a fairly simple way to change the couple's relationship for the better.

    Schlimmer decided to write and number questions such as, "What was the funniest moment of your relationship?" and "Describe the last time you were proud of your partner," on a legal pad of paper to correlate with a deck of cards laid out in the middle of the dining room table. Playing the game helped the couple stop bickering, and start remembering happy moments in their relationship and why they fell in love in the first place. At the end of the evening, his friend's wife told him "I feel like we went to Rehab, you know, couples therapy."

    Years went by and Schlimmer kept noticing how many couples could benefit from a PG-rated ice-breaking card game, designed specifically for couples. "I was able to see that most games marketed to couples were raunchy, and did nothing to address the true problem facing couples," said Schlimmer. According to health professionals, lack of communication is the number one reason why relationships fail and leads to 65 percent of all divorces.

    It wasn't until Schlimmer mentioned the game to his girlfriend, sports marketer, Ashley Chaffee, that the idea turned into something they could sell—and that people would actually buy. "It was obvious to see that a couples game that had the flexibility to be played at home dinner parties among friends, with in-laws over the holidays, or even one-on-one over a bottle of wine, didn't exist," said Chaffee.  And that's how their card game, Rehab-a couples release™, was born.

    How does the game work? There are 52 cards: 48 cards with questions on them and four "social cards" that give the players time to clink glasses, or even share a kiss. Whether you're looking for a relationship fix, or you just want to get to know your partner in a deeper more meaningful way, Rehab-a couples release™ is the bridge to bring you closer.

    "With our culture's reliance on texting, smart phones, and tablets. The art of communication, is evaporating," says Chaffee. "Rehab-a couples release™ forces couples to look each other in the eyes, and genuinely interact. "In a way, it is magical to see couples of any age play the game, and over the course of an hour, watch them inch closer and closer together, laugh uncontrollably, and cement their bond."

    Better than a Plant-Housewarming gift idea!

    Better than a Plant-Housewarming gift idea!

    Your best friends or a couple you are just getting to know moved into a new house/apartment. You want to give them something nice for their new home but the typical plant just won't do. Rehab Gaming has come up with a great gift package that is easy to do and costs under $100.00. An added bonus, the uniqueness of the gift will make a lasting impression for years to come making a great housewarming gift idea that will surely make a lasting impression. Here is how to put the gift together:

    Start with a box: You will need a sturdy gift box to hold all the essentials. Target has great ones that have some nice design on it so you don't have to wrap it which is key. For a sweet touch, add a large sticker to the cover. A "welcome home" sticker or if you want to get really fancy, you can have their monogram done. That way the can keep the box for a nice storage piece after they use the contents. 

    Filler: We used typical shredded filler for our box, but you can use faux flower petals, newspaper clippings from the day they bought their house, or anything that adds some color and protection to the items in the box. 

    Gifts: Now to the fun part! Our box contains a bottle of wine, a wine opener, a candle, 'thank you" notes (for them to use after the housewarming party), fancy ballpoint pen, a nice notebook and a deck of Rehab- a couples release. Most of these items can be purchased at Target or your local grocery store. 

    An added touch: To make your box really stand out, try to find some local goodies. Go to your local paper merchant and find some unique "thank you" cards and other stationary items. If you have a local winery, go there an pick up a bottle of wine. Try looking for a local soap company to put in a bar of soap/candle. This is especially nice for a couple that may be completely new to the area, you are giving them a piece of the neighborhood. If they have a pet, find some organic pet treats, or make your own! Oh- and don't forget the deck of Rehab- a couples release!

    Buying a new home and moving is stressful, your friends will be totally blown away that you took the time to curate this "housewarming party" in a box for them. Ease the stress for them by opening up that bottle of wine and getting to know each other more by playing Rehab- a couples release with them in their new home, it's a night none of you will forget! 

    Outside the BOX gift ideas for Valentine's Day

    Outside the BOX gift ideas for Valentine's Day

    Another Valentine's Day is just around the corner and you'll wait till the last minute to run to the grocery store to pick up flowers, chocolate and a card...right? Why don't you let someone else do the work for you? All you have to do is point, click and pay and they do the rest, plus these gifts are really "outside the box" when it comes to traditional Valentine's Day gifts. Your sweetheart will love them and so will you, here are a few companies we came up with:

    For the Ladies:

    Crated With Love Monthly Date Box Subscription:

    For $19.99 a month, you can receive a monthly date box subscription. These boxes are themed each month to create a spontaneous and unique date night. This is the gift that keeps on giving and your loved one will appreciate the fact that you want to create a date night at least once a month. Get yours here: www.cratedwithlove.com

    BOXFOX:

    The thing we love about BOXFOX is that you can create your gift box from their array of gift options they have on their website. You pick the ones you want or you buy from one of their curated themes. Once you choose what you want, they pack it and ship it directly to your loved one. Shop now and receive free shipping of your first box with code FREESHIP11 www.shopboxfox.com

    For Him

    Harry's Truman Shave Set

    For $15.00 you can get your man started with Harry's Truman Set which includes:

    • 1 Truman Razor Handle
    • 1 Foaming Shave Gel (4.0oz)
    • 3 German Engineered Blade Cartridges
    • 1 Travel Blade Cover

    All orders over $10.00 have free shipping, get yours today here: www.harrys.com

    Man Crates

    Man Crates are the male equivalent to the female BOXFOX. We love that these gifts come in wooden crates and a crowbar for your guy to chip open like a man. You can choose from an array of options and price ranges or create your own personalized box. Get yours here at: www.mancrates.com

     

    And last but not least, don't forget to add to your Valentine's Day gift a copy of Rehab-a couples release, with code BEMINE you receive FREE SHIPPING until the 15th of February: www.rehabgamingusa.com