04 Aug Why do 15 million UK adults want to unplug from their screens?
A piece of research published today finds that one in three UK adult internet users, or 15 million people in the UK, have sought out a period of time offline in the last year, with one in ten (11%) doing so in the last week alone.
Of these who actively spent time offline and away from screens, 25% spent up to a day internet-free; 20% took up to a week off; and 5% went web-free for up to a whole month.
At Time to Log Off we weren’t surprised to hear this. It fits in with all the research we’ve been collecting ourselves showing the impact on mental health and stress of our always-on, screen-dependent, culture. We can see clearly why more and more adults are trying to take breaks away from all forms of screens.
Screen overuse impacts mental health and increases stress
The link between screen over-use and poor mental health outcomes has been found in several studies. One study published has linked too much smartphone use with higher incidences of anxiety and depression. While another found a strong link between heavy internet use and depression, with heavy users 5x more likely to suffer from depression than non-heavy users.
And stress levels and burnout seem to be increasingly connected with too much screen-time too. One US piece of research has found that our ‘always-on’ culture, with high expectations to monitor and respond to emails during non-work time, may prevent us from ever fully disengaging from work, leading to chronic stress and emotional exhaustion.
Time away from screens improves well-being
Surveys done on our own retreats, before and after, show a clear link between spending time away from screens and the reduction in stress levels and the increase in overall happines.
And the new UK survey also reports that UK adults that had spent some dedicated time away from their screens had indeed had a positive experience: a third (33%) said they felt more productive, 27% found it liberating, while a quarter (25%) enjoyed life more.
A digital detox retreat is the perfect way to try some offline time
If you’re one of the 1 in 3 adults thinking of trying a digital detox holiday have a look at the range of retreats we have on offer for the next year and come and join us.