100 Things To Do During Screen-Free Week

by Katy on May 3, 2015 · 20 comments


Monday, May 4th starts Screen Free Week, which means that thousands of people will turn off their TV’s, video games, hand held devices and computers. Yes, computers have become necessary tools, but they’re also a major distraction that suck up hours upon hours of our daily lives. So reset your screen addiction and dust off your creative thinking skills!

Here are 100 ideas to get you going!

  1. Call a friend you haven’t talked to for awhile.
  2. Read a guilty pleasure novel.
  3. Tidy up your garden and then share extra perennials with your neighbors.
  4. Start gathering up extra stuff for a garage sale or thrift store run.
  5. Write a letter to an elderly family member.
  6. Go to sleep earlier.
  7. Invite a friend over for an afternoon of chatting and snacks.
  8. Assemble extra meals for your freezer.
  9. Go for a bike ride.
  10. Start a journal.
  11. Put on your favorite music from high school and belt. Out. Those. Tunes!
  12. Finish up your craft projects.
  13. Choose one room in your house to clean, declutter and redecorate using stuff you already own.
  14. Plant some edible seeds. Don’t have a garden? Many veggies such as lettuce and radishes grow well in pots.
  15. Go see some live entertainment. Local community theater is usually affordable enough to be a treat but not a wallet buster.
  16. Pick up an instrument and practice, practice, practice.
  17. Bake a delicious treat, and then share the bounty with your neighbors.
  18. Go outside with your kids and kick a soccer ball or shoot hoops.
  19. Send an unexpected gift to a child.
  20. Pull out your mending pile and bring your wardrobe back to life.
  21. Put your best sheets on your bed and then take a nap.
  22. Write down your goals for the summer.
  23. Offer to babysit for a friend, and then plan some fun screen-free activities for the evening.
  24. Set up a still life and draw it, even if you’re normally not an artistic person.
  25. Drive your car to the fanciest neighborhood in town and go for a walk among the mansions.
  26. Bring a notebook to a coffee shop and do nothing but doodle to see where your mind goes.
  27. Bake bread and then relax into the smell.
  28. Pull out your board games and play into the night.
  29. Have your neighbors over for an informal potluck.
  30. Take all your blankets and pillows and build a kick-ass fort with your kids. Eat dinner in there.
  31. Set up a lemonade stand.
  32. Lay a blanket out in your backyard and stargaze.
  33. Pull out your piles of paper to organize, shred and file.
  34. Take a long hot bath while listening to your favorite music.
  35. Go to the library and ask about free activities for adults.
  36. Pet your dog/cat/guinea pig/unicorn/ferret.
  37. Take advantage of any sunny days to wash your bedding and hang them on the clothesline.
  38. Take an old friend out for coffee/wine/dessert.
  39. Read aloud to your kids, even if they think they’re too old for it.
  40. Go to your favorite thrift shop and photograph the weirdest stuff you can find.
  41. Put a fresh coat of paint on a tired old piece of furniture.
  42. Use your gym membership.
  43. Recreate your favorite restaurant meal at home.
  44. Visit a museum in your own town.
  45. Take another nap.
  46. Find all the gift cards you’ve received through the years and treat yo self.
  47. Prepare a meal to bring to the parents of young children. Trust me, they need it.
  48. Pull out your comic books and catch up with Archie, Spiderman and Buffy.
  49. Open your windows and air out your house.
  50. Drive to the country and stop at all farm stands.
  51. Make your own postcards and mail them to far flung friends.
  52. Read an autobiography.
  53. Get a book of craft projects from the library and attempt creating something.
  54. Make a flower bouquet from your own garden, even if it’s mostly greenery.
  55. Hula hoop/jump rope/play hopscotch.
  56. Go for a hike.
  57. Wash all your sneakers and shine all your shoes.
  58. Trade clothes with a same size friend.
  59. Visit with an older family member and learn what they did instead of watching TV.
  60. Go on a picnic.
  61. Call a friend who’s going through hard times to let her know that you’re thinking of her.
  62. Treat yourself as you would a guest and prepare yourself a sumptuous feast.
  63. Go window shopping in your favorite district, but leave your money and credit cards at home.
  64. Finish a home improvement project.
  65. Volunteer at a pet shelter/school/food pantry.
  66. Go swimming with a friend.
  67. Go to your local beauty school and treat yourself to a new haircut.
  68. Declutter and reorganize your closet in a way that’s pleasing to the eye.
  69. Buy yourself something completely indulgent from a bakery.
  70. Go find a local body of water. A river, pond or ocean will restore your spirits.
  71. Light a fire in the fireplace and pour a glass of wine.
  72. Take another nap.
  73. Write a short story.
  74. Go to your nearest track and do some power walking.
  75. Surprise your family with a fancy dessert on a weeknight.
  76. Give yourself a manicure or pedicure.
  77. Go to an author reading at your favorite book store.
  78. Bust out that deck of cards for an hour or two of gun rummy, poker, solitaire or go fish.
  79. Do an anonymous good deed for a stranger.
  80. Find some live music to enjoy.
  81. Sit at an outdoor cafe and people watch.
  82. Offer to help a friend for a couple of hours with whatever she needs.
  83. Plan a day trip and explore your own state.
  84. Dump out one junk drawer and get it clean and organized.
  85. Borrow a friend’s dog and take it for a nice long walk.
  86. Dedicate one day to all your boring errands to get them over with.
  87. Trade magazines with a friend, and then bring the whole stack into bed.
  88. Spread a sheet on your living room floor and dump out all of your Legos and start creating.
  89. Challenge your kids to create their own board games, and then be willing to play the games.
  90. Plan a date night with your sweetie.
  91. Take a nature walk in your own neighborhood and take close up photos of the plants and flowers.
  92. Stare into space and let your mind wander.
  93. Read the actual newsprint version of your local newspaper.
  94. Write a letter of appreciation to your mother as a mother’s day gift.
  95. Sign up for a one day class in an area of interest.
  96. Sleep late on your days off from work.
  97. Go to a comedy club and laugh your ass off.
  98. Pore through your cookbooks and find new recipes to try.
  99. Do things that would normally be outside of your routine.
  100. Take another nap.

The average American spends 25 hours per day in front of a screen. Can you set one week aside to recharge your creative juices?

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

Click HERE to follow The Non-Consumer Advocate on Twitter.
Click HERE to follow The Non-Consumer Advocate on Instagram.
Click HERE to join The Non-Consumer Advocate Facebook group.
Click HERE to follow The Non-Consumer Advocate on Pinterest.

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

diane May 3, 2015 at 10:51 am

I admit I am attached to my internet. But, it’s all balance with my life in real time.


Laura May 3, 2015 at 11:45 am

I think you’ve got a typo. 25 hours per day? 😉


Anne May 4, 2015 at 9:11 pm

I noticed the same thing. Had to laugh.


Kim May 3, 2015 at 12:01 pm

Katy, Did you mean 25 hours a week? I’m sure you didn’t mean 25 hours a day.


Katy May 3, 2015 at 12:14 pm

I was exaggerating to make a point. 😉


momsav May 3, 2015 at 1:34 pm

It’s funny that this came up when it did. I’d just decided to pick one dozen sites i LOVE, not like, and only visit those on a semi-regular basis. The net is such a time suck and i need to live a life, not read about someone else’s. We’ll see how it goes. I do many of the things you listed. Tomorrow i re-start banjo lessons after five years away. I can’t wait! Music is under rated, IMO.


cathy May 3, 2015 at 1:36 pm

Great suggestions! I foresee a lot of weeding (and napping). See you in a week.


Isabelle May 3, 2015 at 2:29 pm

I am in!!! Hubby too, hard to believe. See ya in a week!


Nathalie May 3, 2015 at 8:05 pm

Bad timing… not only do I get creative by blogging (I’m not into crafts), but I just got the 2nd season of Elementary from the library and it’s due Saturday… I have 6 DVDs to watch before then. All of you who do choose to participate, enjoy the downtime. I’ll be taking mine at another time of the year 🙂


Bobbi May 3, 2015 at 8:35 pm

I love this idea, but “screen time” is how I stay in touch with my sweetie (long-distance relationship) so I think I’ll participate in this week, but make communicating with him the exception (and work-related screen-time, of course). The hard part will be opening my laptop/picking up my cell phone to online chat/text with him, and not surfing around the internet at the same time, just out of habit.

Thanks for this list Katy! It gives me lots of great ideas 🙂


Diane C May 3, 2015 at 8:48 pm

I’m with Nathalie. I don’t facebook, twitter, instagram, ad nauseum. The only tv I watch is DVR’d HGTV. I l-o-v-e-d your list, but as someone who went over a decade without cable on my way to FIRE, I think the message is pretty well ingrained. I’ll miss you, Katie. I hope you get lots of checkmarks on your list.


Betsey May 4, 2015 at 5:22 am

Love 55. My daughter and I when on long car trips used to play hopscotch without chalk lines on gas stops. One person would make up a pattern, execute it, and the other would try to emulate it. Lots of fun and some exercise.
I cannot stress enough that part of being a parent is to have fun with the kids. The memories are indeed priceless.


JD May 5, 2015 at 8:45 am

I won’t be able to detach from the computer — I used it all day at work, and I do this kind of stuff at lunch — but we rarely have the TV on, less than once a month, usually, and I don’t spend any time surfing the internet at home. I don’t have a smart phone. This is as detached as I’ll get, I’d say, from screens. I loved the ideas, but I already find it’s hard to get to bed on time with the things I do now, and I can’t figure out why. I don’t seem to have time for anything but work, housework, cooking, and laundry these days, and I’m tired of it for sure! I plan to spend this week finding free time!


Amanda May 5, 2015 at 5:01 pm

May I visit this mystical land with 25 hours in a day? I could sure use the extra time right now!


Dave May 6, 2015 at 7:20 am

There really are endless possibilities when you pull yourself away from all the screens.


Isabelle May 6, 2015 at 11:08 am

… hmmm, I cave in!! I do not consider myself a “technology person”, I don’t tweet, blog, Facebook, I don’t even text!! But without my tablet I get so…. bored. So I’m back on. Well, I did 2.5 days…


Gladys (The Pinay Mom) May 6, 2015 at 1:45 pm

I’m really having a hard time to detach from the computer. I don’t watch TV though. But I’m trying to limit my internet use because it is really a waste of time if it becomes uncontrollable.


Ann May 9, 2015 at 9:01 am

My husband and I rented a little cabin in the Pyrenees this past week. There was a TV, but we didn’t turn it on. No cell phones, no laptop, no internet. It was absolutely wonderful getting to hike, fish, read, cook… A reminder that going unplugged needs to happen more often!


Leave a Comment

{ 2 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: