Christmas is only around the corner. I can no longer groan and grumble about the fact it's way too early to be Christmas shopping, because the large size of the crowds, shopping for gifts, at local businesses and shopping malls, is suddenly justified. You know what else is cool about Christmas? Being able to chill out and not read or answer emails, without a pinch of worry that a client, or potential client might think that I'm ignoring them. I passionately believe that creative people need to unplug occasional. I'm also aware of the fact that unplugging isn't necessarily easy. It's worth it though! It's good for the creative juices, and helps you think a little bit more clearly. I'm a major advocate for being fully present when you're with people. It doesn't matter if those people are employees at your local supermarket, a lover, or even your own family: if someone makes an effort to be emotionally present with you, they expect the same in return. Those moments are also extremely precious because connecting with another human being is a concept that's taken for granted. People don't acknowledge what's right in front of their face as much as they really should. The first step involves setting times when you will unplug, so that you can not think about everyday things for a while. People have responsibilities that make it necessary to use technology, however recharge time, that doesn't involve the computer's artificial light needs to happen too. Facebooking, texting, etc at bedtime with your computer's light on full blast negatively affects your sleep, according to a variety of articles I've read this year. Social media and email are an important part of not only my freelance work, but how I communicate with others. Recently I started noticing that it if I stared at a screen, after a certain hour I slept poorly. The second step involves simply telling people when you'll be unplugging, and when you'll be online. A common challenge for work from home professionals is the blurry balance between your personal life and your work life. That's where having a cut-off point is extremely important. The third step involves actually following through with your goal. Don't check emails after a certain hour. Don't sign in to Facebook when you're on your way to bed. Don't stare at your smartphone when you should be paying attention to someone or something. The one time where that's absolutely necessary is when your house just burnt down, someone you care about is hurt, or anything else related. I'm not exactly suggesting that we all need to unplug altogether. I just think that placing limitations on your screen time, is an important part of being respectful, productive, courteous human beings.This holiday season isn't just about the Christmas spirit. It's also about unplugging from your devices for a bit, and appreciating what you've already got.