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Setting Technology Boundaries in the New Year

The Bark Team  |  December 27, 2023

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In today's digital world, weaving technology seamlessly into our family fabric is both an art and a necessity. And the new year is a perfect time to reassess and create better methods of balancing tech with our kids. So let's take a moment to talk about some important tips when it comes to setting healthy technology boundaries for the family. Rules for technology at home should be thoughtful and deliberate, guiding us toward a harmonious coexistence with our digital devices.

Reflect On Your Current Habits  

It's time to pause and reflect on our family's current technology habits. Do you feel like screens tend to take the spotlight during family time? Are there certain moments you wish were screen-free, like family dinner or the car ride to school? Take some time to list out those habits and create a plan to be more proactive about it going forward. By incorporating rules for technology at home, you can establish clear expectations that enhance family interactions.

Understand Why Boundaries Are Important

Boundaries are important in all areas of life, but especially with tech and social media when it’s so easy to get carried away with them. The right boundaries will help you consistently balance the good (and bad) that come from technology. Remember, these boundaries aren't about saying no to tech; they're about saying yes to deeper connections. Clear expectations mean smooth sailing in the digital sea.

How to Set Up Technology Boundaries for Kids: Strive For Practical, Reasonable Steps

Kids of all ages have their own rhythm, and setting age-appropriate limits can help them find the sweet spot. This is where parental controls come into play like a trusty sidekick — they can ensure that your preferred screen time schedule happens without you having to manually turn off screens. Now that’s peak practicality! 

The Bark Home is an especially helpful tool when it comes to screen time. With the Bark Home, you can add all of your internet-connected devices (such as phones, tablets, computers, gaming consoles, smart TVs, smart assistants, and more), decide on a screen time schedule, and watch the devices turn off exactly when you want! Learn more about how the Bark Home can help you efficiently set screen time boundaries in the new year. 

Consider Intentional Screen-Free Times

Think about those times when you want fewer screens and family connections. Whether it's a game night, a backyard picnic, or just good old face-to-face chats, these moments create memories that last. Quality family time isn't just fun — it's the secret sauce for stronger bonds.

Get the Whole Family Involved

Open communication with everyone—big and small—makes setting tech boundaries a team effort. When everyone has a say, it's like crafting a family tech masterpiece together. And we mean that literally — we highly encourage families to write out their tech goals together to ensure everyone is on the same page. Then you can hang it up somewhere everyone can see to hold each other more accountable. It may be helpful to take a look at our tech contract to use as a template for your New Year tech resolutions. 

Remember to be Flexible

As we dive into the new year, remember—setting those tech boundaries is an ongoing adventure, not a one-time thing. You’ll probably have to make adjustments to your goals as both kids and parents have different needs. And of course, you’re not always going to keep your technology boundaries perfectly. But that’s life! And that’s how we teach kids to go with the flow when they watch us do it. 

Thinking Your Kid May Need a New Phone in the New Year?

If you’re thinking this next year may be the right time for your child to get a phone, you’ll want to check out the Bark Phone. It’s a smartphone designed with kid’s safety in mind, coming with all the parental bells and whistles you could hope for! It’s almost completely customizable to fit the needs of your kids — whether they need lots of restrictions or just some lighter guardrails. It comes with Bark’s screen time and web filtering controls, as well as our award-winning content monitoring that will scan your child’s phone for concerning content. Learn how to set up technology boundaries for kids with Bark. If Bark detects something you need to know about, you’ll be sent an alert straight to your phone. Order the Bark Phone today! 

Bark helps families manage and protect their children’s digital lives.

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