It’s 2018 and technology is pretty much seamlessly integrated into our everyday lives which is totally awesome, but it also has its downfalls. Statistics say the average person checks their phone at least 150 times per day. We now live in a world where we are no longer able to separate ourselves from our devices whether it’s for work, school, or leisure. For most of us, we start our day off scrolling through Facebook or checking our email and we go to bed doing the same ritual. Technology is hindering our productivity, social interactions, and being in the present moment. If anything is negatively impacting your personal and professional life, relationships, and overall happiness, you should reevaluate your current actions. This goes for technology. Are you truly happy? Is your work quality slipping? Are you isolated from your friends and family? If you didn’t like your answers or know you can be doing better than you currently are, then I would suggest a technology detox.
When you are immersed to the point of overload, our minds are robbed of human interactions and visual stimulation through natural elements. We get so lost in the realms and black holes of social media and how we are perceived on social media. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to tell you that this is hindering your overall life. It is time to reevaluate what you do online, for how long, and ultimately why. Figuring these answers out will help you disconnect and be more conscious of your actions. Here are 5 tips to help you start your digitally detox.
It is extremely important in the beginning of your technology detox to start by being aware of how many times you check your phone, what locations you are most prone to check your phone, and how much time social media is eating out of your day. This is a digital diet! It is important to start counting your screen time and be aware and conscious of actually being on your devices. A lot of phone usage is a habitual habit that is just wired in our brain that we literally just do without thinking like brushing your hair or smoking a cigarette. It’s like your brain is on autopilot and you don’t think about it you just do it. It doesn’t require much brain power and it is a habitual act. This is the same with checking your devices, so being more conscious will be key to successfully maintaining a digital detox.
When starting a digital detox, it is important to create a specific game plan with strategies and an action plan on how you will achieve detoxing technology. Also try to create specific goals like only checking Facebook for 15 minutes after work. The more specific the better! Creating clear defined goals will help you stay focused. I recommend you find a friend or family member who can hold you accountable to your goals. This is a great way to keep yourself in check and accountable for your actions and progress.
Just like any diet, it is important to start with baby steps. All the fad diets usually end up with you throwing in the towel or are unrealistic to maintain as a long term lifestyle. You want this to be a lifestyle change not a quick fix. Start tweaking little things like only going on Instagram and Facebook during your lunch break and after work. Slow and steady wins the race. Building on these small adjustments will make it easier to maintain for the long term.
It is easy to fall back into the habit of mindlessly checking your phone. It is important to be proactive and avoid these types of temptations. My recommendation would be leave your phone at home when you go to work, your kid’s soccer game, or going out to eat. It also is a good idea to delete all social media apps. Pretend like your phone is an old school Razor where all you could do is make calls, send texts, and play snake. This will help you to stay focused at work and have minimal distractions and temptations. My other tip would be to dig out your alarm clock and start setting your alarm on your alarm clock rather than your phone. This will be a better start to your day in regards to not having the temptation to check Instagram or your email in bed.
When you have less activities to do, it is really easy to fall into temptations of anything. How many times are you bored out of your mind so you just mindlessly checking the Instagram feed? When you have nothing or minimal things to do, you are more likely to watch TV, surf the web, or check your social media outlets. Start writing a schedule of your day and stick to it. My advice would be start planning a lot of after work activities such as going to the gym, meeting up with friends, or go to a networking event. I would even recommend picking up new hobbies. Start cooking from scratch homemade dinners and prepping your lunch for work the following day. The more plans and extracurricular activities you have set up, the less likely you are to check your devices.
There are so many advantages to a technology detox. Liberating your mind through absence of technology is the key element in finding wisdom in one’s self-preservation. Be truly present in the now and everything you do. Believe in the power of choice and the power to change ingrained habits. Anything is possible as long as you believe in yourself and continue working towards your end goal. Try a technology detox for one week and see how rewarding and productive your life can be.
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