We’re the home of the 5:2 Digital Diet, five days using technology and two days off-screen. We promote it as the most effective and easiest way to introduce some digital detox into your life.
Here are our top tips on how to do it.
Buy an alarm clock. We’ve found that removing your phone from your bedroom is the number one way to ensure adherence to the diet. No phone by your bed used as an alarm means no temptation to look at it at night, or first thing in the morning.
Plan to do the 2 days of the 5:2 digital diet at the weekend. There are likely to be less interruptions from work and the upside is more time to focus and family and friends. To remove any temptations to log-on, delete all email and social media apps from your phone Friday night and reinstall Sunday morning.
Dig out your camera. The second highest reason people give for needing their smartphone with them is for its use as a camera. Make sure you have your camera on hand to step into that gap. We love the polaroid type if you want to go really analogue.
Moving through some form of mindful exercise helps you connect to your body instead of being ‘in’ your head. Incorporate some mindful exercise into your two days of digital diet (we particularly love yoga) to keep your mind away from your phone.
Getting out in nature is proven to help with all sorts of ailments as well as being a great stress reliever. A walk in a green space is a great way of distracting you from the temptation to get on your phone, laptop or tablet. Being by the sea is even better.
Enlist support from friends and family. Even better, get them to do the 5:2 digital diet with you. All types of lifestyle changes work best with group support and the digital diet is no different.
Download and share 5:2 Digital Diet cheat sheet and keep it as a handy reminder of how to do the diet.
"Corny as it sounds, when the retreat was over, I felt cleansed. I hadn’t checked the news but I didn’t fear that the world had fallen apart. I felt recharged, not anxious about the work I’d missed."
"Three weeks later, I can’t quite believe I have managed to keep my tech use under control. Already I feel more connected and present during chats or out with friends"
"I found myself connecting much more deeply with the people around me. Without distractions, our conversations were much richer and more interesting."
"Small talk becomes big talk and silences become longer, more comfortable. It occurs to me how frantic technology makes me."
"Time to Log Off aren’t about disconnecting forever, they’re about remembering to disconnect when it matters."
“Doing this retreat has actually revealed just how unhealthy my internet obsession is. I've slept better, felt less stressed and had more energy. The retreat has given me some great ideas to help control my phone. I feel fantastic!”
“My expectations were very high but this exceeded them all. I feel like I have completely rebooted my life!”
“This really exceeded expectations. The food, company, setting. All of it was amazing - really serene. I think this will end up a vital experience for me. Thank you!”
"Time To Log Off offers retreats in places such as Hawaii, Italy and Cornwall. Perhaps for 2016 we should all have a go at stashing away our digital addictions ... and indulge in some good old analogue fun.
"This was a well-organised, friendly and worthwhile restorative. Blissful."
"We came away feeling astonishingly refreshed and restored. Our eyes have been well and truly opened to the extraordinary benefits and pleasures of a hiatus from the constant noise of information."
“It was so peaceful. I’m going to buy a non-smartphone to use at weekends and ask friends to call me instead of texting/Whatsaspp-ing!”
“I found the first day difficult but it subsided quickly. By the end of the break I didn’t want my phone back!”
“I loved it. After this, I’m going to get a landline and turn my mobile off for some weekends. I’m also going to take social media off my phone.”
“It was great to ‘lose’ my phone. I thought it would be stressful but it was surprisingly easy. I will definitely have down-time with technology in the future.”
“I wanted to test how I would react without my phone. Generally I felt much more relaxed and with better concentration. From this experience I know that I can live without my phone. I’m going to encourage other people in my life to develop this ability a bit more too!”
“A really great experience. I will be implementing a restricted phone and digital regime at home, i.e. no screens on a Sunday and no phones in the bedroom. I’ll also take off work email from my phone and be really mindful during the week of when I use the phone and Internet”.
"It was a revelation! I wasn’t aware how bad my digital addiction had become. Feel deliriously refreshed and restored – will definitely be incorporating regular technology breaks into my life. Everyone should!”
"Amazing! The experience made me realise how much I use my phone as a distraction. Not having my phone meant I could really escape from the stresses of everyday life. From now on I’m deleting work email from my phone at the weekends and I’ll be checking my phone a lot less regularly.”