It’s almost amusing that we’ve reached a point in society where people are so dependent on their phones and computers that they have to book retreats designed solely to take a Digital Detox. These simple steps will help you unplug with confidence.
It’s almost amusing that we’ve reached a point in society where people are so dependent on their phones and computers that they have to book retreats designed solely to take a Digital Detox. It’s comical because the term “smartphone” wasn’t used until 1997 and the first phone with a touch interface wasn’t released until 2007, less than 10 years ago. Yet today’s research shows that 90% of American adults own a cell phone, 32% own an e-reader and 42% own a tablet. In an always-connected world, solitude is getting harder to find. Learning to power down promotes creation over consumption. While a retreat can be productive, it’s best to learn how to unplug right where you are. These simple steps will help you do that with confidence.
Set your intention
Before you unplug, figure out the purpose of your “cleanse.” Do you want to spend more time with your spouse or perhaps spend more time with your pencil? Are you looking to reconnect with nature or with yourself? Or are you simply trying to stop feeling self-conscious or questioning your life because you’re busy scrolling through others’ lives? Whatever the purpose may be, make sure it is defined before you begin your journey.
Plan your cleanse
Now that you know what your purpose is, what will you do to achieve complete disconnection? You’ll first need to decide how long you will disconnect for. A day? A weekend? Next, set boundaries. Are you going cold turkey, or just unplugging from your cell phone? Do you want to set a certain amount of time aside where you quickly check your phone in case of emergencies? Figure out what you need to do to achieve what you want to achieve, but within reason.
You’re not trying to put yourself in “time out,” you’re just trying to be in the present. Some ideas of what you can do during your cleanse include: exploring a new town, taking a cooking class, meditating, attending a yoga retreat, writing a book you’ve been putting off, even spending quality time with friends and family. Scheduling time where you can engage in an activity that doesn’t require you to rely on your phone or computer will be the first step towards becoming less dependent on your devices.
Just as people recommend you track how you lose weight by recording what you eat for a few days, recording how you feel with and without your devices can be equally as revealing. Sometimes you’re not aware of how much time you’re really spending in front of a screen. During your cleanse, chart what you’re feeling—how often you falsely feel a vibrate, how many times you reach for your phone to look something up. Once your cleanse is over, keep recording. Do you immediately go back to your old habits? What did you learn from your experience that will help you in the future?
The best part about unplugging is being able to engage in activities that don’t rely on your devices so you can continue to function well and enjoy life independently of them. What will you do when you unplug?
If unimportant tasks are keeping you connected to your devices more than you’d like, it may be time to reevaluate your processes. Contact us today to discover how we can help you set yourself up for success so you can unplug with confidence.