We’re constantly connected and immersed in the digital world, and this can often add to your stress without you even realising it. It’s a bit of a creeper: we don’t know how much it’s affecting us because it’s become part of our everyday lives. You’re bombarded with information and news, a lot of which is often negative, and this can impact your wellbeing and state of mind.
A digital detox can help you to let go, to fully disconnect and relax properly…. Here’s how.
What is a digital detox?
A digital detox is when a person refrains from using tech devices for a period of time: this can include smart phones, televisions, tablets and social media.
Here’s some of the benefits of a Digital Detox:
It can help you sleep better
The light from devices can also causes issues with sleep: so switching off can also mean you’ll sleep better too!
It may also help you create a better work/life balance… many people may find themselves checking work emails on their time off, so by disconnecting from devices you’ll be able to fully take a break from work, even if it’s just for the evening.
FOMO is real
The fear of missing out is ever present online, particularly social media. You’re constantly seeing what other people are doing and you may unconsciously compare yourself to others, leading to feelings of being left behind or not doing enough. By disconnecting, you can focus on what’s actually happening in your own life, allowing you to be more mindful and focused on the moment.
Here are some signs you need a digital detox:
- You find yourself checking your phone every few minutes.
- You feel anxious or stressed if you can’t find your phone.
- You feel down, angry or anxious after being on social media.
- Getting likes and comments on your posts can change how you feel about your day and you’re constantly checking them.
- You feel like you’re missing something if you’re not checking your device.
- You stay up too late on your devices.
- Your concentration outside of playing on your devices is slipping.
Here’s a few quick ways to digitally detox…
If you feel like your tech is negatively impacting your physical and mental wellbeing, perhaps it could be time to dip your toe into digital detoxes and see how it can improve your wellbeing.
Here’s what you can do.
Don’t completely try and drop everything in one go, that’s not always possible. This could be as simple as starting by turning off notifications on your phone, just do what steps you can.
Every time you reach for your phone: think about why you need to before you switch it on. When you’re using technology, be more aware of when you’re using it so you’re fully appreciating it and can be more mindful, rather than passive.
Set yourself a bedtime routine
Stop going on devices at least 2 hours before bed: this will help you to switch off. Have a bath or read a book. If you like listening to music, you could use your phone to play the music but if you can, keep notifications off (or even switch to airplane mode) so you don’t get distracted by texts or notifications.
When you’re spending time with friends or family, keep your devices tucked away so you can fully engage with others. You can also put away devices during mealtimes.
Adjust your phone
If you’re finding yourself stuck on certain apps, try and set up time limits on these apps so you can control how long you’re on them.
Find another hobby to fill the time
If you find yourself scrolling in those times between tasks or when you don’t know what else to do: find something else to fill your time. This could be reading, writing, listening to music, or doing some exercise. Spend time in nature.
Clean up your social media and feeds
Do you feel down after going on social media? Make sure to curate your social media with uplifting content that inspires you and uplifts you, not ones that make you feel bad about yourself and drag you down. Take some time to go through your feed and unsubscribe / unfollow anyone who doesn’t bring you joy. The same goes for your newsletter subscriptions: we all know how these can get out of hand!
If you feel like your tech addition is getting out of your control or you need some extra help, talking to a doctor or therapist could be the best way forward.