Does the thought of going without your iPhone cause anxiety? Do you get distracted by social media every time you’re near a computer? Have you started seven projects this week but completed none? Or maybe you’re feeling increasingly lonely despite having hundreds of “friends” on Facebook.
Maybe it's time to take a little break from technology. Experts recommend tech detoxes to help us unplug from devices and reconnect with those we love. While I’m extremely grateful for technology, there are a few downsides: headaches and eye strain, disconnecting with family and friends, long sedentary hours, a loss of focus, etc. So, I highly recommend giving a technology cleanse a try. Here's how.
How To Do A Technology Detox In 4 Easy Steps
1. Set your intentions.
What's the purpose of doing the cleanse? Do you want to reconnect with your partner, spend more time writing, stop wasting time on Candy Crush, reconnect with nature, become more centered, or stop comparing yourself to others on Instagram?
How long will you disconnect? A day? A weekend? Maybe you’ll dive into a full week?
Will you do this alone, with your partner, or maybe a group of friends? Getting others on board will help you ease into your detox and provide a great support system.
Who do you need to tell? If you’re usually very connected and disappear for a few days, people might start to worry!
2. Plan your cleanse.
What will you remove? Will you get rid of Facebook on your cell phone? Will you limit your computer use to just a few hours during the day/
What will you keep, even if just for emergencies?
If you’re wandering into the woods to reconnect with nature, it might be a good idea to keep your cell phone for emergencies. Maybe you have a list of books to catch up on, but they’re all on your Kindle. There are no rules! You’re setting this cleanse up for yourself and your own personal goals.
What will you do instead? Some ideas: Camp or take a walk in nature, catch up on books you’d like to read, explore a town, cook at home, take cooking classes, meditate, attend a yoga retreat, check out a local workshop, spend time with friends and family, or write that e-book you’ve been dreaming of.
How will you avoid temptation? I recommend planning multiple activities to keep yourself prepared. Write your intentions on a piece of paper and stick it to your mirror.
3. Disconnect and tune in to your feelings.
Even if writing isn’t part of your intention, jotting down a few thoughts and feelings each day is a good idea. Are you feeling anxious, bored, lonely, excited, untethered, free, relaxed, etc.?
4. Reflect on the experience.
Some questions to ask yourself: