Since the Covid-19 pandemic, most of us are spending more time on our devices than ever. And from increased rates of stress, imposter syndrome, addictive behaviors, and physical health issues, we are feeling the consequences.
As Anne Lamotte puts it, “almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes – including yourself.” Disconnecting from our hyperconnected world with a digital detox can save your sanity – and it doesn’t have to leave you feeling like a social recluse.
Why Do a Digital Detox?
The internet is an amazing thing. From search engines and social media to streaming services and online classes, the possibilities for connection and learning are endless.
But sometimes, our constant access to technology can feel like a prison. We fall into a routine of constantly checking our email inboxes and notifications. And even when there are no messages, tags, or shares, we wait for them in anxious anticipation. Scrolling helps relieve some tension – until minutes, and then hours, have disappeared.
Sound familiar? If so, you’re not alone. Over 70% of people feel overwhelmed enough by their devices that they have considered cutting back or disconnecting completely with a digital detox.
Taking a digital detox means taking a break from all things tech and digital – your phone, laptop, tablet, smartwatch, and TV – for a set amount of time. It also means deliberately engaging in non-digital tasks to reconnect and focus on the physical world.
Here are just a few of the benefits you can experience when you take the time to unplug regularly:
- Reclaimed focus and more productivity
- Improved sleep and fewer negative effects from blue light
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Reduced digital addiction and doom scrolling
- Improved relationships and meaningful connection
- Enhanced overall well-being
6 Tips for Taking a Restorative Digital Detox Without the FOMO
Unplugging from the digital world sounds great – until the fear of missing out kicks in. Thankfully, that initial FOMO is fleeting once you start to feel the benefits of your digital break. If you’re ready to ditch the screen stress and still feel connected to your loved ones and the world, these tips can help.
Host a phone-free party.
If you’re worried about feeling left out while you disconnect from the digital world, bring the party to you! Connecting with our loved ones face-to-face will cure any digital FOMO in an instant. Invite a few friends or family members to a “Phone-Free Party” so everyone can enjoy being fully engaged in the moment.
Embrace the mindfulness of chores.
Technology makes multitasking easy – we can listen to podcasts while cleaning or talk to a friend on the phone while we go for a daily walk. And there’s nothing wrong with that! But during your digital detox, you have an opportunity to turn these ordinary tasks into mindful meditation. Rather than breeze through your chores, use this quiet time to work intentionally, practice deep breathing, and connect with yourself.
Try a new non-digital hobby.
Stepping away from the screens can help you reconnect with old passions or discover new hobbies (and new friends). Sign up to take a cooking class, pottery workshop, dance lesson, or anything that’s hands-on and creative.
Practice gazing meditations.
Excess screen time can damage your eyes. So, why not use your digital detox to give your peepers some TLC? A gazing meditation is a great way to soothe tired eyes. During a gazing meditation, you’ll keep your eyes open and relaxed while focusing on a particular object. Try it with a candle, a tree, or even the stars. After your digital detox is over, remember to practice the 20-20-20 rule to protect your eyes: every 20 minutes, look away from your screen at something at least 20 feet in the distance, for 20 seconds.
Unplug in moderation.
If unplugging entirely for a few days doesn’t work for your lifestyle, simply cutting back can be a more realistic approach. Rather than turning off all your devices for a long period of time, schedule digital “downtime” where you unplug for a few minutes or an hour every day. Or, try putting your phone on “Do Not Disturb” mode when you need to focus.
No detox would be complete without a healthy dose of movement! Exercise not only helps your body detoxify impurities, but it also helps you clear your head. Grab a friend and head out for a walk, or take a group class to squash any feelings of FOMO. Then soak up all that feel-good energy from your post-workout endorphins! You can also use exercise when you’re off your digital detox to fight the urge to retreat to your phone every time you need a break. Rather than scrolling on social media, log into The Pilates Class for a 5-minute stretch.
Aside from giving your brain a well-deserved break, perhaps the best benefit of a digital detox is how it quiets all the digital noise and helps you enjoy more meaningful moments with the people around you. Keep that connected feeling alive when you’re back online by joining us in a Grounding Class or Sound Meditation!
- Over 70% of people feel overwhelmed enough by their devices that they have considered cutting back or disconnecting completely with a digital detox.
- Here are just a few of the benefits you can experience when you take the time to unplug regularly: reclaimed focus and more productivity, improved sleep and fewer negative effects from blue light, reduced stress and anxiety, reduced digital addiction and doom scrolling, improved relationships and meaningful connection and enhanced overall well-being.
- Try unplugging in moderation. If you’re worried about feeling left out while you disconnect from the digital world, bring the party to you! Connecting with our loved ones face-to-face will cure any digital FOMO in an instant.
- Embrace the mindfulness of chores. Rather than breeze through your chores, use this quiet time to work intentionally, practice deep breathing, and connect with yourself.
- After your digital detox is over, remember to practice the 20-20-20 rule to protect your eyes: every 20 minutes, look away from your screen at something at least 20 feet in the distance, for 20 seconds.