Would you survive one day a week without Facebook, Instagram or Twitter? Does the idea of completely disconnecting from technology every Sunday make your spine tingle with anxiety? If so, then you are a perfect candidate for the digital detox challenge. It could be tough, but you will feel re-energised and more motivated in the long run.
Only two decades ago, most of us had limited access to computers, had not even heard of the internet, let alone smartphones, emails or wifi. Yet we survived and we had so much uninterrupted fun. Recent studies show that too much screen time is diminishing our eyesight, increasing stress levels and the ability to communicate effectively face to face. Boutique hotels are now offering "e-tox" retreats where you pay them a lot of money to effectively confiscate all electronic devices (I'd sign up tomorrow if they asked me).
Resist the temptation just to check, and really switch off all technology. Make the most of the opportunity to fill the space created with something new and inspiring. This is the perfect time to get back to basics - read a real book, listen to the radio or maybe start learning the harmonica.
Step 2: Experience nature.
Now that you're bored, why not hit the beach, take the dog to the park, go for a bushwalk or hike up the nearest mountain? Get the blood pumping, the muscles moving and invigorate your lungs with some fresh oxygen.
Step 3: Spend quality time with family and friends.
Arrange to meet up with family and friends on your designated digital detox day (dddd). There is nothing better than genuinely listening to others and not having the niggling thought to just check your phone. Sit down and read a book to your children uninterrupted, teach them to fly a kite or make origami. Children also need a break from technology - all you need to do is switch off the tv.
Step 4: Get creative.
Channel your imaginative energy into your garden, learn a new activity or try something different in the kitchen. There are so many recipes to get you inspired at recipeyum.com.au, and you will not be lost for ideas over at mykidcraft.com. Just make sure you write your ideas down before detox day.
Constantly being plugged into technology is amazing and important in today's modern world, however it is equally important to schedule in "uninterrupted down time". Whether it is one day a month or one morning a week, we all need to allocate time to process our busy lives and hopefully prevent physical and mental burn out. Good luck and happy digital detoxing.
I quit Facebook and then Twitter a couple of months ago. It was difficult but I really feel like I have a little more space back in my own head. I have limited energy at the moment, and I felt like I really wanted to catch up with my friends in real life rather than thinking I'm keeping in touch with them on FB when it doesn't feel like I'm keeping up with much at all. I miss it, though!
I struggle with how to use the net wisely. My mind often runs at 100 k's an hour. There is so much to learn, so many wonderful curiosities out there! I have an urge to learn about different things. The net is both wonderful and completely overwhelming in this regard. I have 11 different browser tabs open at the moment - and this is a good day. It's crazy.
Digital detoxing is so good for the soul. Finding ways to remove ourselves from the online space and connect mindfully with what is going on in the space that is our bodies out in the earth feels really important to me. I love it that you have written this article :)