Switching off from the digital world can be hard, but it’s essential if you want to look after your mental health. Whether it’s your laptop, your phone or even your satnav, too much time spent staring at a screen is not good for you. With so many devices and an ever-increasing need to scroll, click and share, a digital detox is often a necessity. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the amount of technology in your life, it’s time to take a break and reconnect with the world around you. A digital detox could be the reset you need.
What is a Digital Detox?
Take a break from your screens and devices! Digital detox is a great way to reduce stress and be present in the world away from digital devices. It is a temporary period of completely disconnecting from all digital devices and instead focusing on social interaction and mindfulness. A digital detox is a great way to give yourself a break and come back feeling refreshed, relaxed and recharged.
As more people are admitted into rehab for screen addictions, the risks of excessive screen time are becoming increasingly apparent. Along with cannabis, screen and gaming addictions are now the second most common reason for young people to be admitted to clinics. Prolonged device use can lead to loneliness, depression, distraction, and poor sleep quality, all of which can severely impact mental health and overall wellbeing. It’s important to stay mindful of the risks associated with overusing screens, and to find balance in our digital lives.
Do I Need a Digital Detox?
Are you and your family spending too much time looking at screens? Consider taking a break and giving yourselves a digital detox. It can be beneficial to take some time away from devices and to reconnect with one another. Take the time to think about how much time you’re using screens and how a digital detox may help you and your family.
There are four easy ways you can switch off –
1. Periodical bans
Take a break from technology by setting yourself a certain period each day where you don’t look at a screen. Start small and gradually increase the amount of time you give yourself as you become less reliant on your device. A great place to start is to ban technology during mealtimes and an hour before bedtime. Enjoy your meal with the people around you and take the time to wind down and relax before trying to sleep. Looking at a bright screen before bedtime tricks your brain into thinking it’s daytime and the bright light can disrupt your natural sleep switch. Give yourself the time to be in the moment and enjoy life away from the screen.
2. Practice mindfulness
Switch off from the constant hubbub of technology and take a break from it all. Just 10 minutes of your day can make the world of difference—close your eyes, concentrate on your breathing, and feel your body as you inhale in through the nose and exhale out through the mouth. After this short break, notice the difference in how your body and mind feel. Not only will you feel refreshed, but you’ll be better equipped to tackle whatever comes your way. So, why not give it a try?
3. Get an app for your smartphone
Apps have been created to help us understand our device usage and monitor how often we check our phones throughout the day. Most of us are aware that our digital habits are less than ideal, but seeing the exact numbers that reveal how many hours we spend mindlessly scrolling through our phones can be a shocking wake-up call, prompting us to take a digital detox. With these apps, we can gain valuable insight into our device usage and make positive changes.
4. Go Outside
Get out and enjoy the great outdoors! Fresh air and a change of scenery can do wonders for your mental and physical health. Take a walk, go for a bike ride, or find a peaceful spot to relax and read a book; no matter what you choose, you’ll benefit from getting some fresh air and soaking up the beauty of nature. Start making time for yourself and the great outdoors today!
Technology can be incredibly useful and educational, providing us with the tools for creativity, connectivity and enjoyment. However, if technology and your devices start to dominate your life and negatively affect your relationships, it becomes a dangerous situation. Taking a step back to assess your usage and making sure you prioritize your relationships is essential in order to keep technology in its place.