If you have decided to read this, the likelihood is, you realise you are on your phone far too often and thinking about digital detox. Why? Well this is the scene I now see more than I want to in the public places. Group of people having lunch or coffee (or whatever) together and they are having a blast. The only problem is, they are having a blast only thanks to their phones. They don’t speak to each other, they don’t enjoy the moment. They don’t create the memories together. Why? Because they are too busy to take pictures of the food they are eating or place they are in. After they post the picture, they need to (of course) check what other do currently and what their favourite people are doing or rather posting right now. The only thing these people talk about is what is going on on social media.
Why do you need digital detox once in a while
Well I won’t pretend I am a saint. I realise that sometimes I am like this as well. Or rather because my dear husband (who is not on any social media (I know weird, right? ) has to remind me. More often than I like. The situation when my husband needs to remind me that we are trying to have a romantic dinner in a beautiful restaurant, I don’t like one bit. It makes me feel awful. I am ignoring and ruining the atmosphere because I need to take the perfect shot of the food (or ideally of every course). My husband is right.
Do you remember the time before Twitter and Instagram and Pinterest etc? I do and I am not trying to say “The world was a better place” kind of cliche, however it definitely was more real. Now stop for a minute and think: “When was the last time you had a day or week without any social media? And when was the last time you had a great dinner with friends without taking pictures of food and selfies? If you don’t really remember, than my friend, it is time to do the digital detox and here are the 6 easy steps to help you on the way.
6 steps to digital detox
- The first and the most important is to understand this: “you will not miss on anything” and you are doing this because you want to change your daily behaviour and life experience for better. You want to start again experience the moment rather than look at it later through pictures.
- Take a break. Literally. Go somewhere to relax. Maybe a weekend in the country with spa? Even more ideal is to go somewhere with a bad wifi or 3G signal. It helps to have difficulty to connect if you are an “addict”
- Just switch off your phone. If you need to keep it on, you can also delete all your social media apps from your phone. Don’t worry, you won’t loose your accounts, they are perfectly stored. You just loose the immediate “press the icon” moment, because you would have to install the app first, which is a bit of a drag.
- When you go out, or for dinner etc, leave your phone at home (or at the hotel). That way you will not be tempted to look at it all the time
- If you can’t bear the idea to leave the phone at home, just take it with you but switch it off. Ideally keep the phone switched off the whole day. Specify a dedicated and limited time you will spend on the phone per day. Just make sure it it less than 1 hour.
- The last but not least thing is: “CREATE MEMORIES AND ENJOY THE MOMENT” Read a book for once, have a dinner with real friends (not your online friends) and leave your phone alone.
What happened during my digital detox
So did I do it? The answer is “YES” I did it. Ok, it wasn’t completely voluntarily. We went for holidays to Antigua 2 weeks ago and I didn’t have a 3G (or 4G) data (basically any data) and I could get WiFi only at one table. Yes I called even my data provider – I could buy them but would spend probably thousands of pounds – so “Thank you, but NO, thank you” was my answer. First 2-3 days, I had serious withdrawal symptoms. I was annoyed and irritated first, however after only few days I rather liked it. Suddenly i felt free and din’t feel the pressure to document everything and check what others are doing. I stopped worrying about the engagement on the platforms because I was engaged in reality. I had the most amazing time and you know what was the best thing of all? When I came back home and went back online, I didn’t feel like I missed anything. The people were still the same, posting similar pictures or tweeting still random outburst. So now I have made a decision that I will be doing regularly digital detox.
And what about you! When will you do it? Let me know in the comments below.