With the advent of social media websites, the use of the internet and digital devices has increased invariably. People now face trouble staying away from their phones. The internet is undoubtedly a necessity in the present world, where everything is operating digitally. However, excessive usage of digital devices can cause many physical, mental and emotional problems as well as hamper your concentration at work. Therefore, researchers advise people to go on a digital detox often to keep their minds happy and bodies healthy.
Meaning of Digital Detox
A digital detox is a conscious decision to utilise less digital technology in your daily life. It is a period of time when a person does not use devices such as smartphones, televisions, laptops or social networking sites. Detoxification from digital gadgets is a way to focus on real-life social interactions without being distracted.
Benefits of a Digital Detox
- Sound Sleep
Digital devices have been known to disrupt the sleep cycle. They affect your sleep not only quantitatively but also qualitatively. It has been found that using tech devices before sleeping is linked with many sleep disorders such as insomnia.
- Better Mental Health
Research shows that excessive usage of the internet and social networking sites often leads to anxiety and depression. A digital detox allows you an outlet to boost your mental health and reduce your anxiety.
- Reduced Social Comparison
The digital world often makes you compare yourself unnecessarily with your relatives, friends, peers, colleagues, etc. A digital detox will help you feel confident and become less wary about making social comparisons.
- Effective Concentration
The internet allows continual exposure to distractions in our lives, which significantly affects our ability to concentrate. Digital detox helps to restore our concentration levels as we stay away from digital distractions.
- Better Health
With less anxiety, sound sleep and better mental health, most of our physical illnesses get treated naturally. A digital detox helps to boost not only your mental health but also your physical health.
Do you Need a Digital Detox?
If your answer to the following questions is a yes, then you need a digital detox.
- Have you started missing out on real-life conversations because you are preoccupied with the internet?
- Do you often spend more time on the internet than you intended to?
- Are you compelled to check updates on your phone every few minutes?
- Do you feel dissatisfied with the way you utilise your time using the internet?
- If you cannot check your phone, do you tend to get anxious and irritated?
- Do you experience strong emotional reactions to the number of likes, followers, etc., you have on social media?
- Are you facing trouble concentrating at your work because you check your phone every now and then?
How to Do a Digital Detox?
- Recognise Your Habits:
The first step in a digital detox is to identify your digital habits. You need to figure out if it is just Instagram that is making you feel distracted, anxious and preoccupied, or is it all the social networking sites? For some people, it may be specific digital devices that can cause problems, such as smartphones. Understanding your habits will help you make your digital detox plan.
- Make Your Own Rules:
Once you have figured out your digital distractions and problems, you need to make your rules. For example, if Instagram is bringing trouble to your life, then you need to cut down your usage on that particular app. However, if it is your phone which is keeping you preoccupied, then you need to stay away from it. You also need to set your time limit. You can choose a few hours or a few days, depending on your problems and your convenience.
- Make New Habits:
Only reducing internet usage will not help you in a digital detox. You need to compensate for that craving with a new habit. You can read, write, take a dance class or do Yoga during the time you used to spend on the internet.
- Start Practicing Yoga and Meditation:
Yoga is one of the best habits to incorporate in a digital detox as it also helps to detoxify your body and mind. It helps to declutter your mind, improve your concentration and boost your mental health, all of which aids you in combating the problems caused by the digital world.
Tips for Starting with Digital Detox
- Reward yourself every time you interact with someone in person without using technology.
- Practice Yoga and meditation every day. It will help you organise your thoughts and motivate you to stay away from the internet.
- Set your own deadlines. You can even perform a digital detox for a couple of hours each day.
- Inform your friends and family about your digital detox and ask for their support.
- Find strategies to keep yourself occupied and bring new habits into your life.
- To avoid temptation and quick access, delete social networking apps from your phone or turn off the notifications.
- When you feel tempted to use your smartphone, get out of your home and go out to dinner with your friends or take a stroll in a park.
- Maintain a notebook to keep track of your development and to record your feelings about the digital detox.
A digital detox will help you bring back your concentration and focus. It will boost your overall health and bring peace and happiness to your mind and body. Doing a digital detox is not easy. However, with these tips, you can get started with your practice of a digital detox quite easily.