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Digital Detox - Unplug Your Mind, Body, and Soul

Digital Detox - Unplug Your Mind, Body, and Soul

We are plugged in for nearly twenty-four hours a day, every day. Our work requires it, our family requires it and even our free time requires that we be connected to some kind of digital device, and all of this has happened over the last few decades.

In the past, we didn’t have wires tying us down everywhere that we went. We were free to move about untethered, without the worry of batteries dying out, signals failing, or exceeding data usage limits. We weren’t constantly connected to other people via email, text messages, and social media. Believe it or not, we actually had time to spend with ourselves and our own thoughts.

What is a digital detox?

You may have heard the term digital detox before, but what does it mean? A digital detox is a process of staying away from all digital technology for some time. That means turning off your phone, unplugging your laptop, and hitting the power button on your tablet. For a true digital detox, you stay away from all technology, social media, and online accounts for a little while, giving your brain some time to relax and taking a moment to just be present in your real, physical life, without any distractions.

There is no specific length of time for a digital detox - it can be as long, or as short as you need it to be. Some people like to detox for an hour or two each night before bed, while others need a vacation away from technology that lasts a few days, or even longer!

Why is detoxing important?

It’s no secret that being connected 24/7 has made our lives a lot easier in many different ways, but did you know that it has also caused our lives to be a lot more stressful and has caused society, as a whole, to lose touch with reality? A digital detox, even a short one, has so many benefits, such as:

Woman at computer

  • Reducing stress levels - We are expected to be online and available all day, every day. Our society has become one that demands immediacy and if someone sends us a message, there is an unspoken presumption that we will reply right away. This constant level of demand can be stressful. Every ping from a new message or notification can cause anxiety, whether we realise it or not.
  • Improving sleep - All of the electronic devices that we use emit blue light and this light has a negative physiological effect on our bodies. When it’s time to sleep, we produce a natural hormone called melatonin which helps to regulate our circadian rhythm and allows us to fall asleep when we are supposed to and sleep soundly the whole night through. When we are exposed to blue light, especially before bed, our body’s natural melatonin production is affected. Our sleep cycle becomes confused, and we find it extremely difficult to get a good night’s rest.
  • Increasing self-confidence and improving self-image - Not everything that we see online is true, but sometimes it’s hard to remember this. As we scroll through social media we see endless posts of happy, healthy people, doing amazing things and it’s easy to forget that these pictures are just a quick snapshot of these people’s lives. Most of these pictures are staged with good lighting and special filters and aren’t a true representation of real life. It’s easy to get down on ourselves when we look in the mirror and it doesn’t reflect the same level of perfection that we see on our screens.
  • Providing a better perspective on your reality - Living in an online world can make us forget what is going on in our real lives. We can become blind to all of the blessings that are present in our reality and lose touch with all of the things that are most important to us in our day-to-day lives - things like family, friendship, and good health.
  • Increasing happiness and improving mental health - Spending time constantly connected to our phones and laptops can cause so many mental health issues. Focus and concentration issues like ADHD can arise as we are constantly scrolling and searching, never taking the time to zero in on one thing for any length of time. To make matters worse, we are in a constant state of comparing ourselves and our lives to others, leading to depression and a poor state of mental health.

Your digital detox challenge

Now it’s your turn to challenge yourself to a digital detox! It may feel difficult at first but if you stick with it and make digital detox a part of your regular self-care routine, you are sure to see substantial and long-lasting results.

Computer audio plugChoose the digital detox that best suits your needs:

Sweet Dreams Digital Detox - Starting a half-hour before bed, turn off your phone, laptop, and tablet and take the time to do something else that you enjoy. Perhaps read a good book, have a relaxing bath or try out a new yoga routine. Over the next few nights, slowly increase your detox time until you have reached an hour or two of tech-free time before bed.

Not only will you fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and have sweeter dreams, but you will awake feeling calmer and have more energy throughout your day.

Savour Your Meals Digital Detox - Make it a habit to eat all of your meals without surfing the net or scrolling through social media. Turn mealtimes into a time to truly enjoy the food that you eat and focus on savoring every bite. Being mindful of your eating will improve your digestion, keep you in the present moment, control your food consumption and create a relaxing and stress-free environment.

The Weekender Digital Detox - This is the perfect detox for someone who really needs a break. Inform your work, your friends, and your family that you are going offline for the weekend and completely unplug! Plan out fun and relaxing activities that don’t involve any technology and you’ll be surprised at how refreshed you feel, come Monday morning!

I’m On Holiday! Digital Detox - Going away on holiday is supposed to be one of the most relaxing things that you can do, but so many of us try to schedule meetings and homework while we are away. Why not schedule a holiday and unplug the entire time you are gone! No emails, no text messages, and no social media! The only things you are allowed are some time on the beach, a good book, and an ice-cold drink. Everything else can wait for your return!

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