Digital detox was a foreign and downright unappealing concept to me because I am constantly checking my cell phone, reading emails, surfing the net or skimming through social media apps. Electronic devices have become common place for not only leisure activities but has extended to the everyday workforce. For those of you that are not familiar with the term, a digital detox is a period of time that a person stops using electronic devices, mobiles, smartphones, laptops, etc.
But isn’t it great to have an abundance of knowledge at our fingertips? To have real-time updates from everything from world events to our favorite sports team?
Few would argue that access to this information is overtly harmful; however, there are many benefits to a digital detox (minimum of 24-hours is highly recommended to attain the desired benefits from your detox).
The immediate impact is giving your senses a break and relieving yourself of the constant demands that are consuming much of your attention and energy. Think of all the alerts that are coming to your smartphone, all the emails that compile in your inboxes; it can be overwhelming when you think about it. When you think further, how much of this myriad of information that is being feed to you is actually truly impacts you?
On a detox, your mind is free to focus on the issues and personal relationships that are important to you and you’ll be able to spend more time focused on those specific issues without the constant interruptions and distractions. With your newfound perspective, maybe you’ll be able to finally solve that work problem that has been plaguing the office for the past few weeks or a new advertising campaign to coincide with a new product launch.
If unplugging completely feels overwhelming, try to take small steps to build up to a full detox. Instead of checking Facebook every hour, don’t check it for a couple of days. Stay off your phone in social settings. When was the last time that you were out with a group of friends or your family and you did not check your phone on consistent basis? Resisting this urge allows you to stay in the moment and truly positively impact your personal relationships. Taking these steps should eliminate any anxiety associated with a full detox.
There may be a small group of individuals that will need something more extreme to disconnect. If that is the case, there are retreats available (require a financial commitment) that will distract your mind with outdoor activities, eating healthy and promoting a focus on yourself to drive home the benefits of unplugging.
While the thought of a digital detox may initially seem daunting, the benefits to your mind, health perspective, relationships and your overall freedom should really have you thinking, why didn’t I try this sooner?