I Committed To Going Tech-Free On Weekends. Here's How It Changed My Life
Recently, I made a big commitment: I decided to stop using my phone on the weekend. I know I am not alone in craving more connection, more presence, and a break from my phone—it's basically another appendage at this point!
Let me be the first to say that I truly enjoy social media because of the inspiration I find there. I learn from amazing teachers, read beautiful quotes, and I’m able to share the exciting things that I am personally working on with like-minded souls around the world. Let me also be the first to admit that sometimes I feel completely addicted to it, which is why I needed to set boundaries around it.
When my kids would ask me, "Mom, are you even listening to me?" while my phone was in my hand, it made me extremely sad because I wasn’t. Slowly, I started to create boundaries for myself around technology. I started taking walks without my phone, turning the phone on "do not disturb" for a bit each day, and never having my phone at meals. I also started taking a few hours off each weekend, and I decided to stay off social media completely between picking up my kids from school until after dinner.
Any one of these is a great place to start. I started with 10 minutes of "do not disturb" a day and went from there. Any single one, on any single day is a win. My meditation and mindfulness practices have made me much more honest with myself when it comes to the "what’s working" and the "needs improvement" in my life. I could see that even with these positive changes, I was constantly thinking "Would this make a good post?" as I was going about my day, even when I was trying to be present with my family. I was thinking in terms of social media all the time. I connected with my intuition and could feel that I was ready to take the next step: a whole day off each week.
Saying so long to social media on Saturdays.
For my social media "off" day, I decided to choose Saturday—it coincides with Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest. Although I'm not super religious, as a Jewish woman, it felt like a nice tie-in. I felt more relaxed almost immediately—I wasn’t thinking about posts or cataloging my life for others; I was simply living it. I was playing outside with my kids more, reading on the couch if I had downtime, or taking an extra walk with my dogs. As it turned out, without mindless scrolling, I had a lot more time on my hands!
I also felt so much more tranquil, more grounded, and more centered. I decided I wanted my entire weekend to feel this way, so I set the intention of taking weekends off social media altogether. Committing to myself in this way felt like a huge act of self-care and self-love. It's been one of the biggest challenges of my life, but it's so worth it.
I can't lie: Sometimes I am really tempted to hop on social media on the weekends. I've even opened Instagram before and done a mental version of a hand slap and immediately turned it off. I genuinely like social media; I just like myself more when I have breaks from it, and that’s what I have to remember in moments of temptation.
Finding the social media happy medium.
As an entrepreneur, author, and speaker, I build my business on social media. People won’t magically know about my books if I am not out there, so my weeks are about brand-building and working online. As a mom, wife, and friend, my job is to truly be in each moment with those I love, especially on the weekends. That is sacred family time, and I want to be as present as possible. Taking weekends off has allowed me to spend more time connecting with loved ones as well as resting my body, mind, and spirit.
On Mondays I feel excited to see what has been happening in my online world, but by the time Friday night rolls around, I once again feel ready to say goodbye to social media for a few days. I’m ready to unplug from the world at large and plug into the life that is right in front of me: my life.
Looking to do a digital detox? Here are 11 tips to make it happen.