You and your phone: Take a holiday and take back some control

We are hearing a lot of talk lately about the importance of ‘living in the now’. Of keeping our real life connections strong with face to face communication. Of getting outside and getting back on board with nature and fresh air. There is a sense of foreboding for future generations that the technology we love so much may be hampering our ability to sit back and smell the roses. We are being told to put done the phones, unplug the laptop and ignore the emails. But how do we really do this when so much of our lifestyle is now managed by portable devices?

The Sunshine Coast Destination Limited and Tourism and Events Queensland decided that being on holidays is the best time to take a look at how you use technology and maybe take back some of that control.

They have devised the Smarter Smart Phone Code of Conduct (SSCOC) to give all of those locals and visitors to the area a tangible solution to ‘live in the moment’ and truly enjoy all that is on offer. It is not asking for a cold turkey detox and they wont ask you to hand over your phone at reception, they just want to give you the chance to become more conscious about how we are using our phones. Still use them to take a photo of that crocodile…but be sure to get a good look in his eyes, notice the texture of his skin, the size of his teeth…and then take a snap! (preferably before he does)

So to help you reduce your dependency on your phones, they have created 7 simple behaviours that you can action whilst on holidays.

1. Avoid being a search it all Make the most of the moment and seek out your own special corner of the coast

2. Elbows and phones off the table Make the most of the moment with great food and company

3. Kiss your phone goodnight Make the most your night with a restful nights sleep or some romance

4. Look before you snap Make the most of the moment and take in this truly breathtaking place

5. Take a phone free day Make the most of the moment and experience nature without distractions

6. Talk now text later Make the most of the moment and enjoy this precious time together

7.Taste before you upload Make the most of the moment and savour every mouthful

Maybe we are too concerned about instagramming the crayfish and cocktail that we forget to really savour each mouthful. If we are scrolling through our facebook feed are we really inhaling the smell of the ocean, or noticing the feeling of the sun on our skin?

If you are visiting the area you will notice hotels will have posters, bedside cards and coasters all outlining the 7 behaviours. Many of the tourist attractions too, have come on board and even have phone free zones for families to have lunch or just hang out and talk about their experiences.  But it doesn’t have to end there. Hopefully the changes and conscious thinking will help people think a bit more about their everyday use. Sure we all need to keep our phones on us, but maybe we can rethink how we use them. Setting aside certain times to check and reply to emails, setting time limits for ourselves to check our facebook feed. Turning off the ringtone so you are not disturbed when out to dinner or playing with the kids. Just taking back a little control.

Be Smarter with your Smartphone


I love my phone. I love that I can take a pic, video some memorable moments, look up a restaurant, get directions, check the weather, listen to music. These are all things I like to do with my phone on holidays too. But maybe something like this would help to re-establish some boundaries for ourselves about the dependence we have on our phones and the importance of getting back to really connecting with people and getting back to nature.

What do you think about the idea of having a holiday code of conduct such as this? Do you think you could do with the chance to re-evalutate how you use your phone?

This is a sponsored post for Sunshine Coast Destination Limited and Tourism and Events Queensland


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This Post Has 15 Comments

  1. Aroha @ Colours of Sunset

    Hubby and I have tried to have tech-free weekends when we got away child-free. We always carry a phone “just in case” but we try very hard not to use them, and mostly succeed. I think I need baby steps. An hour without my phone and work up to a day without it. And have it purely for it’s sole purpose – phone calls and “just in case”!

  2. Rachel @ The Kids Are All Right

    For me, a reminder to live in the moment is always welcome. Whether it’s my smartphone distracting me or my worries, I know I don’t want to miss the ‘now’ but sometimes I do need a nudge. Good on Sunshine Coast Destination Limited and Tourism and Events Queensland for trying something a little different by reminding us to really experience the moment.

  3. Grace

    This post couldn’t have come at a better time! My husband just asked me a couple of hours ago if I could ever, EVER live without my phone. Even for a minute.
    Hmmm….I told him truthfully by answering no. Yet, I like to think that I can live in the moment. I guess I’m not as tech free as I think I am.
    Thanks for prompting the thoughts!

  4. Cath

    We went on a cruise earlier this year and didn’t have any computer or phone access for 2 weeks. What a delight to live in the moment pretty much all day, every day! I even had to wear a watch again, just so we got to dinner on time. It certainly helped put everything in perspective… my life did not fall apart, just because we couldn’t constantly check emails or FB, and we have the most wonderful memories of this precious family time.

    I compare this holiday with the previous year where we shared a holiday house in a beautiful seaside town with friends and their 3 teen boys and about 5 phones/laptops. They had to just about drag the boys off to do all the offline things (exploring caves, walking along the beach, having dinner). We enjoyed having our phones and interwebs too, but spent most time offline, and had a great time. I wonder how many great memories of that holiday they have though.

  5. Leanne Winter

    I love this advice, Martine. We recently attended film night at our sons’ school in which my oldest son had a film entered. Hubby asked me before heading off if I had the video camera charged up ready to capture the film presentation. No, I do not – was my firm reply. I want to watch this and enjoy it – not see if through a view finder. Not a phone, I know, but along the same lines, I think.

  6. Renee at Mummy, Wife, Me

    My phone and I really need to take a break from each other. Even at night if I hear it swish I wake up and see who’s communicating with me. I’m an absolute shocker. Do they have rehab for phone addicts?

  7. Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me

    I need to do this in everyday life, but it’s not easy when I need to be contactable by my clients. However, I suppose for a few hours it’s not the end of the world if they can’t get in touch with me, especially when it’s not one of my deadline days.

  8. Neets

    Great advice Martine. I was cringing a lot through this post because I’m so bad at this. My hubby hates how much I use my phone. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Seana

    Ironically I am reading this on my phone whilst on holiday on the Sunshine Coast!! But I think this is a good initiative and have been reading about it in the local papers here. Didn’t bring my laptop and am having a digital lite week which is much needed.

    So that’s all I will say. Good points well made.

  10. Kirsten

    Just had a week in Palm Cove and actually tried to tune out as much as possible and I have to say it was lovely! Just walking in the beach with no phone was a perfect reminder that we need to do this more often

  11. Alli Price

    What a great idea – and sometimes you just need to be reminded, don’t you! I couldn’t do without for the whole holiday but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to cut back!

    Cheers, Alli x

  12. Gillian

    Think this is a great idea and not just for holidays either. Technology is fantastic but it’s also so addictive and definitely interferes with family time. Definitely good to be reminded. Thanks 🙂

  13. Becky from

    I LOVE this. Earlier this year I did a switch off and surprised myself with how easily I got through the time – however the rest of my family surprised me by not making it a whole day. Someone didn’t even make it to the afternoon! I like to think that if we had some little reminders we would quickly realise that having our heads in our phones all the time isn’t the way to go. Unfortunately, it’s MUCH easier said than done.

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