09 Dec 4 ways to make a digital detox last
Committing to a digital detox retreat in a beautiful location with lots of distractions might sound easy. But what happens when you return home? How can you make sure your positive experiences of going device-free can be extended back in your ‘real life’?
1. Don’t turn on your phone in the morning for an hour
If you’ve followed our advice and left your phone out of the bedroom you’ll have a head start on this. But instead of immediately going to retrieve it try and start your day peacefully without immediately rushing to check emails and social platforms. 80% of us habitually reach for our phone within 15 minutes of getting up and actively creating a space to focus on other things will help you start your day off calm and focused.
2. Take social media apps off your phone
We know from talking to people on our retreats that FOMO and mindless scrolling through social networks is responsible for most of the compulsive phone checking that many of us do. To extend the benefits of a digital detox at home remove your social apps completely from your phone and monitor whether this has a positive impact on how much time you actually spend checking it.
3. Set specific times to read & reply to emails
We’ve become a generation that feels the need to respond to emails immediately, and that was never the case before the invention of the smartphone. Checking emails continuously interrupts the ‘flow’ of getting absorbed in other tasks and no doubt contributes to the reduction in concentration and focus we have experienced over time. Set aside very specific time slots to read and respond to emails and resist the temptation to interrupt other activities to do that.
4. Set digital detox times or places
Setting specific times, or areas, which are ‘no-phone zones’ will be a very personal decision. What might work for one person may not for another. Experiment and see what enhances your life and brings some of the benefits of digital detox back home. Some suggestions are: no phones in the bedroom, no phones at the dinner table, no phones after 8pm at night, no phones when with your children or no phones at the weekend. The choices you make don’t really matter, the benefits will come when you set boundaries around your use of technology, however small.