As much as I love technology and find it hard to drag myself away from my laptop and phone, over the last year or so I have found it increasing beneficial to take myself offline and reduce the amount of time I spend on all of my devices.
I found this really tough at first as it felt like something was missing… as if I was missing out on something! My first teaching diploma specialised in teaching information technology, my my, how we have come far since I first started teaching IT in the early 90’s.
As time progressed, my dependancy on technology progressed to a point where my phone was managing all parts of my life, did I say managing? It felt more like taking over. Don’t get me wrong, I still depend on technology to help me be productive and eliminate a lot of my grunt work in my business.
It got to the point where I was so stressed out and my health was suffering that I started pulling away from technology and found that doing a digital detox for a week whilst I took time out for much needed rest and relaxation, I found my life starting to balance out again.
I no longer walk whilst listening to a podcast or audio book, instead I listen to these whilst driving or doing chores round the house. I also listen to an audio book whilst going to sleep. I set up a sleep timer for this to go off after 30 minutes. I have also started ready physical books again.. I find it great to be able to take a marker and highlight text and write notes in it too!
I now no longer feel the need to take my laptop with me on holiday, (this came about as my MacBook Air died) and found my MacBook Pro a little too heavy to take with me. And do you know what? I started living in the present moment! I came back from holiday feeling that I actually had a holiday! Looking back to when I took holidays before the event of all this technology I can remember switching totally off and come back feeling totally refreshed and energised. I must admit though taking a phone to help you find your way after getting lost in a foreign country a godsend!
During the week and at weekends, I only check my email once mid morning. I check into social media a couple of times during the day during my working hours and turn off all notifications whilst I am working on my projects. For blogging I use Mars Edit, and focus on the task in hand.
It seems the more I digital detox, the more focused and contented I feel, although I must admit it was really hard and felt incredibly strange to start with, my life now seems less overwhelming, I am more productive and feel more in control of my life. I love the sound of bird song when I am doing my morning walk, and over the summer I have witnessed fantastic sunrises, seen deer up close, foxes, in fields and a great sense of being alive again.
Have you started to detox digitally? If so how did you start and what benefits have you found from doing so?