We live in an age where technology is EVERYWHERE. From cell phones and computers to virtual books and credit cards, it’s hard to stay away! However, too much time spent using devices can have detrimental effects on health. Today we’ll be discussing the concept of doing a “Digital Detox” - why it’s important, how it benefits you and some useful tips & tricks for the best success!
SIGNS THAT IT’S TIME FOR A DIGITAL DETOX
Some of the common signs and symptoms that you experience that indicate it may be time to consider doing a digital detox include:
Diminished Cognitive Function
Inability to Focus
And many more, especially when combined with several hours a day of technology usage. Now we know what you might be thinking, “but how can I avoid it… our lives revolve around technology?!”. That is SO true! But, taking even a short amount of time to let your body decompress and function in a space without the use of devices is greatly beneficial to your health.
BENEFITS TO DOING A DIGITAL DETOX
While everyone’s version of a digital detox is going to look different, there are so many benefits to performing a digital detox. Some of the many benefits are:
Improved depression, anxiety
Higher energy levels
Sharper cognitive function
With all of these great benefits (and several more), it is easy to see how spending some time away from your devices can contribute to better overall health. Now, for the big question… “how do I go about a digital detox?”
STEPS FOR DIGITAL DETOXING
Timing is EVERYTHING - For the best success, choose to do your digital detox during a time that you know you are less likely to be needed or requested online. Good examples of timing are over a weekend or during vacation time.
Plan Ahead - To eliminate distractions, plan ahead of time and inform those around you about what you’ll be doing. This will not only help fewer messages flood your inbox, but you’ll have a support team throughout the time as well!
Schedule Your Screen Time - The biggest part of executing a digital detox is going to be restricting or limiting your time using devices. While it may not be feasible to turn your phone off completely, you can schedule certain times to do non-essential tasks on your devices like check texts, emails and various news feeds. We have found that it is best to not allow yourself to be on a device for more than 10 minutes at a time, and no more than 3 times a day. YES, that’s only 30 minutes a day. Sometimes, we don’t even use it that often!
Out of Sight, Out of Mind - Again, it may be necessary to keep your phone on with the sound turned high in case of emergency. However, once you’ve done that, put your phone aside and resist the urge to “check it” just in case. If your ringer is on high and non-essential notifications are blocked, you will only be notified when you’re truly needed.
Turn OFF Push Notifications / Turn ON Do Not Disturb - Going off our last point, be sure to turn off those group text notifications and any push notifications from apps and messaging systems that are not absolutely essential.
Fill the Void - We’ve found it to be extremely helpful to make a list of the things that you can and want to do outside of using devices. If you know ahead of time that you want to use this time to learn a new skill or try a new recipe, do your research beforehand and print off any necessary recipes, instructions, etc. so that you’re not tempted to get online!
Embrace It - Use this time to be present, listen to your body, connect with those around you, rest and simply enjoy being detached from the online world. Having a positive outlook and attitude will help the whole process become so much more pleasant and enjoyable.
Performing a digital detox does not have to be weird, daunting or feel impossible. There are so many things that you can do to make this process easier and more easily implemented into your own life.
One of the biggest questions we get about doing a digital detox is frequency - how long should it be done for and how often. We personally like to do a 2-day weekend digital detox at least once a month, as well as a mini 1 day digital detox every Sunday. This time really helps us focus on self-care, as well as feel more refreshed and energized to take on day to day life afterwards. If a weekend doesn’t seem feasible in your life, try just doing this for 24 hours on Sundays! Even just having one day away from screens will help you feel SO much better.
We hope this guide helps and inspires you to try this on in your own life. If you have any questions or concerns about digital detoxing, you are always welcome to contact us!