We hear a lot about digital detoxification these days. With all the electronic gadgets that have made life comfortable for us, we have the world at our finger tips now. From ordering food from apps to knowing what is going on around the world, we can do it all from our smartphones. We keep updating on social media every now and then while the smartwatches on our wrists track our footsteps and heartbeats. Staring at the silver screen is so much of a part of life now. All of these digital components have given rise to the need to unwind for a while and this is what digital detox is all about.
What is digital detox
The Oxford Dictionary defines digital detox as, “a period of time during which a person refrains from using electronic devices such as smartphones or computers, regarded as an opportunity to reduce stress or focus on social interaction in the physical world”.
Why I went for digital detoxification
Last week, I was not keeping very well. So, I decided to go for a week of digital detoxification. I usually do it when I feel I am spending more time on the internet and on my phone. I am not a great social media enthusiast, nor do I post regularly, but an occasional disconnect from everything that is digital in life does more good than harm.
What I refrained from during digital detoxification
For the last seven days, I uninstalled facebook, instagram and whatsapp from my phone. I kept my phone calls to minimal. I stayed away from my phone for most part of the day, except for attending any important call. I switched off my phone after 9 pm. I completely refrained myself from using my laptop. I did not read any news or anything at all on the internet. I gave up on watching tv too for the whole week.
What I allowed myself during digital detoxification
I let myself check my phone only once everyday for any emails or messages. I also called my mother everyday (for 5 minutes), as that is something I can hardly live without. She is my best friend and support system.
How it helped me
The enterprise of digital detoxification helped me in several ways. It helped me connect more with my family. It took care of anger and anxiety issues for a while. Most importantly, staying away from the phone and laptop helped me fix my health as I took a lot of rest for a whole week. I found time to work on my doodles. I also wrote down a few articles on my notepad, which unfortunately I had put away for almost a year. Above everything else I finished re-reading my favourite novel by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I engaged myself in a bit of gardening activity and my toddler enjoyed it too. Every day I meditated for at least 15 minutes. I also went for walks downstairs in the lawn without the phone.
What were the problems I faced
I had to initially struggle to keep myself away from checking the phone. I missed out on chatting with my bestie on whatsapp. Since I am currently a stay-at-home-mom, and not working on any writing project either, it was easy for me to keep away from the laptop and the phone.
Will I do it again
Yes, I will do this again. A week of digital detox made me realise that I have a life beyond all the electronic gadgets. Strangely, with hardly any time spent on devices, this week was a lot more than ever about happiness, fitness, positivity and peace of mind for me. I have decided to go on morning walks without the phone from now on, since the chirping of birds is actually a sweeter music than the ‘relaxing music’ that I used to listen to earlier.
Do I recommend it
I strongly recommend digital detox for better health, mental peace and happiness. It is like disconnecting from the virtual digital world to connect with the real you. It may not be easy for everyone since most of us have regular jobs that need us to sit at the computer for hours or connect with others through other smart devices. However, a day or two of refraining from the electronic gadgets might not be a bad idea. I am actually considering about going on a vacation that invloves digital detox. I guess that will be even more fun! 🙂