A Happy Thanksgiving: Connect By Disconnecting

I hope you’re not reading this blog at the Thanksgiving table. Come on. Don’t you have anything better to do? Like being thankful and being with family?

Okay, maybe you’re not. But I bet you’re tempted to check your email while everyone slips into a tryptophan coma. While you’re at it, why not tweet that funny joke your nephew told at dinner? What’s the harm of seeing how your Facebook friends are enjoying their holiday? Maybe no one will notice or mind, but there’s a real good chance someone’s going to notice and take offense.

So in the spirit of family harmony, maybe you should keep your mobile devices off — and connect by disconnecting. Think about these factors when considering going off the grid during Thanksgiving:

  • Define what is important. Really. Will the world end if you don’t check email? Honestly assess what is important for you to check — if there is indeed anything worth checking.
  • Set some time aside. If you have to work, pick a time slot when nothing is going on. Find a quiet place where you can do what you need uninterrupted. And it’s a lot less intrusive to everyone else.
  • Let people know. Again, if you have to do it, let family know you have something important to do. Then they know you’re not just avoiding them or escaping uncomfortable moments.
  • Embrace the off button. There are some real benefits to turning off your devices and avoiding multitasking. It may seem like you’re sacrificing productivity but your brain will be better for it.

Remember why you’re doing this in the first place. You went traveling over the river and through the woods to be with family…not to test their wireless signal strength.

This is your chance to enjoy the time off. Take advantage of it while it lasts. Happy Thanksgiving!


Carl Natale is a freelance blogger who writes about tips and advice for small businesses. He runs the site Expensiccino.com - a site about how top brands set their prices.


  1. Stella on the 25th November

    The only reason I am online right now is because my family is far away and husband is hard at work. Since many of my loved ones are in another country constantly staying connected through the internet makes us feel closer.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  2. Jennifer Brown Banks on the 26th November

    Guilty as charged. 🙂 I love this post! But, unfortunately having to divide our attention is part of who we are and the way we’re wired as creatives, entrepreneurs, and busy professionals. On a positive note–the more time I spend “connecting” online, reading periodic emails and typing on my keyboard, the less I spend stuffing my face and putting on extra pounds that I don’t need. 🙂 And that’s something we can all be truly grateful for…

  3. Alan on the 26th November

    You need to reassess your use of the term “asses”. 🙂

    • Mike Vardy on the 26th November

      Ha! Spellcheck doesn’t catch those. Thanks for noticing – and changed.

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