My name is Holly, and I’m a tech addict. Like many of you out there, I’m a new age junkie; living in a world of digital dependency, where the drug of the day is our device of choice. Did you know, we carry more tech in our pockets every day than what it took to get us to the moon?!
If you’re anything like me, one of the first and last things you do on waking and sleeping is check your phone. On average, we spend a terrifying month each year on social media. Every day, a new app appears to handle a different part of life in ways we never thought possible. It’s increasingly difficult to switch off, but we need to. “Human beings are not like machines. Downtime is a feature. Taking time for a digital detox is essential,” said Arianna Huffington in her book, Thrive.
Our love affair with tech is having negative implications in our daily lives; results from recent studies are worrying. Smartphones have given way to an increase in insomnia, social media promotes narcissism and has been said to be a major player in the surge of mental health issues, whilst this obsession with screens is making our children less empathetic. How can they make meaningful, real-world connections when their eyes are cast downward to a digital one?
In a world full of screens, how can we learn to log off? Here are a few tips:
Make a list of your gadgets: from phones to FitBits, make a list of the tech you rely on daily. This will show you how dependent you are on your devices.
Commit to making one change at a time: remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day! Set achievable goals for cutting down. This could be deleting Facebook or changing the frequency by which you receive emails – do what’s right for you.
Know your limits: give yourself a daily allowance with your devices. By knowing your usage, you’re more likely to cut down.
Leave your gadgets at home: something I struggle with! This could be going for a walk without headphones or going to dinner without your phone; I find it really helps me be more present.
Make your bedroom a no phone zone: neuroscientists say the blue light from screens suppresses melatonin, which makes us more alert as we try to go to sleep. Banish the blue and reap the rewards.
Have you got any tips on digitally detoxing? Do share them in the comments section below.