Google+ Authentic Parenting: 'No Artificial Light After Dark' Challenge

Monday, May 13, 2013

'No Artificial Light After Dark' Challenge

At the start of December, my family and I started a No Artificial Light After Dark challenge. I know December is far gone now, but I still wanted to write about this, who knows I might inspire one of you.

I felt we were watching too much television at night and that we started lacking connection, specifically with my husband, since he's only home on the evenings, and typically, we'd make dinner and have it in front of the tv. And what better time then around christmas to seize an opportunity to connect as a family.

The rules were pretty clear: no lights, no screens, no games. The exception was candles and the

No artificial lights after dark challenge, image: colorfoxes
christmas lights (we didn't have a tree last year).
It was also clear that our daughter could opt out when she wanted, given that it was us who undertook the challenge.

The first night, my daughter wasn't won over by the idea AT ALL! She demanded to watch something and we let her watch a movie on the Ipad. She did like that we had lots of candles.
The next night, she must have been won over by our joyfulness and togetherness, because she never asked for tv at night again for the whole rest of the challenge.

I must admit that my husband and I cheated one night to look at tile for our house after our kids had gone to sleep. And there was one time we had to turn on the lights to clean a poopie diaper, but all in all, we didn't feel the need to cheat very often. Even though it does get dark here at seven in the evening.

We spend lots of time talking to each other, playing board games (we hadn't done that in a while!), taking baths… No artificial lights never was a problem and we did reconnect. We also slept better and earlier.

I could certainly recommend it to anyone who wants to reconnect to their inner clock and each other, and I think I might make it a yearly challenge.

Has this inspired you to do a challenge of your own? Check back to tell me how it goes!
Have you ever done this? What were the results?



  1. This sounds so interesting! Right now it stays light until 9 or 10 pm so it'd probably be an easy time to try it...I'm intrigued! Sounds like a nice way to reconnect. How long was the challenge? The whole month?

    1. yes, we did the challenge for the whole month. It was actually quite fun. I can imagine in summer it's less challenging ;)


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