Do you find yourself mindless scrolling through Instagram–visualizing the places you'd like to travel, or the body you want to have–all while sitting at your desk job?
Is your email inbox pinging you at all hours of the night? Do you feel like you can't ever put your phone down in case of a work emergency?
You're not alone.
Let me repeat that – you're not alone in this. Many people fear the idea of their phone dying, or even having it out of eye sight for more than 10 minutes. And it's not only because we're so tied to social media. Many of us feel as though we're expected to be available at all times by our places of work ... But you're not!
In fact, you are less productive when you don't take time to yourself to recharge.
How do you Digital Detox?
There are a few ways you can get away from your phones and screens – go cold turkey, or a few hours at a time. No matter how you do it, see how you can increase your productivity, both at work and in your everyday life!
This one is pretty simple. Choose some dates to get away from your phone, email, etc. and stick to it! Even better? Maybe you have a vacation planned where your rental house "doesn't have cell service" – don't worry, we'll keep your secret. ;)
What you should include in your detox:
- Turn your phone off OR if you don't have a landline, turn off the data and Wifi on your phone. This will let you reach loved ones, and plan fun outings without your phone.
- Turn your email off (from wherever you get it) – phone, tablet, computer, watch.
- Put your computer away! The exception here is if you have a cozy "Netflix and Chill" night planned with your friends or loved ones.
- Plan activities with friends and family!
This one might take a bit more planning as you need to pick and choose times and ways that you can actually get away from your phone.
Some suggestions are:
- When you get home from work, leave your phone in ONE spot, as if you had a landline. Turn it on silent and check-in every hour if you really need to.
- Turn your phone on airplane 1 hour before you go to bed. Your alarm clock will still work!
- Go on a hike and leave your phone at home!
- On the weekends, leave your phone at home for 1/2 the day - while you're grocery shopping, going out with friends, etc.
- Motivation tip: change your phone and desktop screens to inspiring backgrounds, so when you do have to look at them, you feel great!
Some other benefits of a digital detox?
- Improved posture: you look more at people and what's around you, rather than being hunched over your phone
- Better conversation skills: when you can't Google an answer, you continue conversations and sometimes make up your own answers
- Better sleep: you already know this – screen time before bed messes up your REM cycle
Before starting your detox, rate your productivity level on a scale of 1 (very low) to 10 (very high). Rate it again, on the same scale, after you've finished your detox.
Every time you do a detox (say you use 1 weekend each month), rate it again. And see if it increases with each tech-free period!