Pre-Baby Challenge #1: Reduce Screen Time

Pre-Baby Challenge #1: Reduce Screen Time

At 26 weeks pregnant, I am doing a lot of thinking about how my life will change in just a few short months. I’m also considering the ways in which I want it to change: what behaviors do I want to adjust before becoming a parent? This is how I came up with the idea of the Pre-Baby Challenge. We all have things we want to change about ourselves, and I personally have often struggled with executing that change. My husband and I have discussed that being responsible for another human kind of forces your hand. If you’re not behaving in the best way possible for you, how on earth are you supposed to set a good example for someone who’s just learning what it means to exist in this world? Based on that notion, I am putting some challenges in place for myself in the weeks leading up to the baby’s arrival, and I intend to detail my successes (and potential failures) right here.


 

I spend a lot of time looking at various screens. A LOT. I am on a computer all week at work, and also do some part-time work from home on my laptop. In addition to all of that screen time, I watch so much television. I mean, it’s stupid how much TV is watched in my house, especially since most of the shows/episodes are things we’ve already seen a million times. And if I’m not watching actual television, I’m staring at YouTube videos. Sometimes it’s new content, but sometimes I’m re-watching videos I’ve seen 3-4 times.

Could I possibly be wasting any more of my time or making my vision degenerate at a faster rate?

I read on an infographic that any screen time before the age of 2 can potentially delay or impair a child’s language development. Interacting with babies and toddlers and speaking to them, even if they don’t comprehend the words, really helps to build their brains, nerve endings, and future vocabularies. So, just by having the the TV on in the background (which we do so frequently), we could be reducing the future intelligence of our child (Disclaimer: I understand that nothing is a guarantee, one way or the other, but this feels like something worth trying).

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In an effort to improve my own brain function and eyesight, as well as those of my future child, I am going to reduce my screen time. There will be limits to this because I still have to work. However, I don’t need to scan Pinterest or Instagram all the time, do I? Additionally, I’m not going to include my Kindle as a screen, since I only use it for reading eBooks.

Instead of having the television on in the background while cleaning or cooking, I will listen to music. When I get bored, I’ll pick up a book or go for a walk, not turn on an episode of Psych I’ve seen 5 times. And I won’t check my phone first thing in the morning, except to turn off the alarm.

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Do you spend a lot of time looking at screens? Do you feel it’s a problem for you? If so, what steps are you taking to change this habit?

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