In this increasingly fast paced and digitally influenced world, it’s difficult to find the time to switch off and get away from it all. With so many of us busy with work and checking our phones on a daily basis, it can sometimes seem a little daunting when someone mentions having a “digital detox”.
Many of us would jump at the chance to leave our phones at home and go on a long weekend away or head out with friends without the temptation to check our feeds, but for others it can be incredibly difficult. It isn’t surprising that giving yourself a break from the perils of Instagram comparison, or Twitter feeds is incredibly beneficial for your mental health, yet it’s learning to switch off that people have trouble with. The wellness experts over at Shakti Himalaya have given their 5 tips for learning to switch off and refresh your mind.
1 Log off
The problem with social media, emails and news feeds is that they are so easily accessible, and with the touch of a button we are immediately submerged into this digital world, which is almost suffocating with its sheer amount of content. The best thing to do to kick start a detox is by logging out of all of your apps such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. That way when it comes to you going back onto your phone, it will be much more difficult as you will have to sign back in, and you will find you won’t want to spend the time logging back in.
2 Make real life plans
One of the best ways to really switch off is by making real plans with friends and family. Forget a quick phone call or Skype session, this is about human contact and the fantastic feeling you get after meeting with good friends and not looking at your phone once. It is best to keep your schedule outside of work busy so you’re not tempted to lounge around on your phone. Perhaps visit the cinema with a friend, this way you will have no choice but to detatch yourself from the outside world.
3 Don’t set unachievable goals
The worst way to do a long digital detox is by banning yourself altogether from any contact with your phone. This won’t work and will only increase your chances of boiling over and heading back to your phone. It’s best to allow yourself to check your apps, but give yourself timed sessions. Have a 15 minute block at the end of the working day where you check everything once – but don’t linger. This will mean you will feel more relaxed as you will have seen what’s going on online, but that you don’t have to continue scrolling needlessly for hours.
4 Leave the gadgets at home
If you really are serious about the detox, then it may be best to leave your digital items at home altogether, whether it be your phone, laptop or iPad. If you leave them behind, then you will have no choice but to exempt yourself from the online world. It may be slightly frustrating at first, but soon you won’t notice and will learn to live without.
5 Don’t be tempted
It will be ever so tempting to say that you’re going to have a quick scroll through your feeds, but more often than not you will suddenly be there for hours checking each app and attaching yourself once again to the digital world you wanted to take a break from. Try to make yourself aware of your actions. Many of us don’t even realise when we’re picking up our phones, but when you feel you want to check your feed, remind yourself that there won’t be anything new or worthwhile to view, and that you’re only hindering your chances of having a real detox by going on the apps.