Being technical people we fill our days with devices, screens, apps, calendars and keyboards. Guilty of this myself I want to talk about letting go of the technology in our lives, if at least for only a brief period.
Basing your life and work in the technical world is a choice, although it’s an easy argument to say that the choice is fading. Not having a smart phone or home internet connection has become unthinkable to some, including myself, and it would certainly hamper most individuals ability to get things done in the modern world. Rather than rail on the current state of technology in our lives, I would advocate for just stepping away from the technical world when possible.
For the last 6 years some friends and I have hosted an event in the Walker River basin, neatly tucked away on the western edge of Nevada. The idea of the event is to get together with a group of friends, regular or future, eat great food and laugh while competing in a series of events that humble us all. The events include trap shooting, horseshoes, calf roping, desert golf and darts, all done over the course of one Saturday every May.
We charge for the event, but all the money goes back into the prizes, food and cash winnings. Because of the logistics of scorekeeping, feeding and paying out winners for 50 or so people, we (the hosts) can not completely leave the technical world completely (spreadsheets abound). However, all that is expected of the participants is to have fun while meeting some new people and enjoying great food. Many will win some money or a side prize, but honestly this event is about getting away from our daily lives. During this event this last May, I could not help but thinking that most of the attendees had usurped cell phones or computers in lieu of smoked meats, desert air and Nevada rain.
These sorts of events re-energizing. Not worrying about gritty technical details or the corporate bottom line of any mistake I may make allows me to reflect on how important these corporate things actually are when I return to my daily grind. I realize we have all heard that we have to get away to be more productive, but if any of my readers want to spend a weekend in May experimenting with this philosophy, write me back. Cell phone optional but leave the charger at home.