With technological advancements over the past two decades, there's no denying it that technology has easily become a part of our lifestyle or daily routines. Whether it's at work answering emails, or connecting with our friends and loved ones through social media - it's become an essential form of communication.
Although the use of technology has brought more possibility and convenience into our lives, it has also brought drawbacks, including depression, anxiety, FOMO (fear of missing out in social media), and above all, phone addiction that may leave us feeling burnt out and exhausted.
Many have tried to resolve the issue of too much digital use by disconnecting completely. Unfortunately, for some, it is not an option to opt out from the digital world. With that, I invite incorporating balance and six sustainable suggestions for a proper digital detox:
1. No screen time in the mornings
I notice that I tend to have a productive day when I utilize the morning with a consistent routine that fits best for me instead of going straight to my phone to check social media. The morning feels slower, calmer, and peaceful as I get ready for the day, make a nourishing breakfast, and journal. And I feel like I can put my best foot forward to conquer the day.
2. Limit screen time by half
Screen time is no joke! The average person tends to be on their phone for at least 8.5 hours a day! That is similar to watching about four Harry Potter movies in one sitting! Cutting that amount in half not only decreases harm in the eyes, but that time can also be managed to do other things that can benefit our well-being, such as going for a walk, cooking or knocking out your to-do list for the day.
3. Delete applications that do not help you stay productive
I often found myself going on Facebook over and over in the same 10 minutes! I would see the news highlights, go on market place, see what my friends are up to, then get off my phone. Only to go back on my phone less than 2 minutes later to do the same exact thing. It wasn't until I made the decision to remove the application from my phone did I feel much better mentally, but also was able to prioritize other things throughout the day, instead.
4. Find a physical "fidget" alternative
Phones tend to be a used as a way to fidget when one may feel anxious or bored. That is when it is a good opportunity to utilize a physical fidget alternative instead of using your phone! Here are some good alternatives:
Fidget spinner (a classic)
Smooth Stones or crystals
Popping Bubble wrap
5. Sit with it
Sometimes it is best to step out of your comfort zone, accept the uncomfortable, and sit with the feeling of not being on your phone. It is helpful to either talk to a friend or to track down your digital detox in a notebook. "Sitting with it" is a good form of meditation and stillness, because it invites back awareness into you psyche as the overstimulation of technology dims down.
6. Dive into non-technology hobbies
When going through digital withdrawal, you may realize how much time you do have when you're not in front of a screen all the time. That is a great opportunity to get into some hobbies that don't involve a phone or computer, such as exercising, reading, diving into a creative craft like painting or writing. Those may not sound as fun at first, but you will feel better and more proactive afterwards.
Creating a better relationship with technology helps our well-being from feeling too overwhelmed with what is going on in the world as well as too over-stimulated. Balance is key.
What is one way that helps you detox from the digital world?
"Technology is a useful servant but a dangerous master." - Christian Lous Lange