Unplug to Recharge: The Digital Detox
When Apple unveiled the iPhone in 2007, we knew something big was on the horizon - but could we have guessed the impact new tech would have? Little more than a decade later, 86% of us admit to constantly or often checking emails, texts and social media - which can take a toll on our wellbeing. In fact, these "constant checkers" report higher levels of stress than their more unplugged counterparts:
- 42% of constant checkers say political and cultural discussions on social media cause them stress, compared to 33% of non-constant checkers.
- 44% of constant checkers feel disconnected from loved ones even when together, compared to 25% of non-constant checkers.
- 42% of constant checkers worry about the negative effects of social media on their physical and mental health, compared to 27% of non-constant checkers.
- 35% of employed parents check work email constantly on non-workdays, and those who do so report higher stress levels than both typical constant checkers and non-constant checkers.
If you identify with any of the above, consider a digital detox. Taking time to put down your devices and focus on the here and now increases mindfulness and reduces stress.
You've probably heard of people refraining from gadgets for extended periods of time, even days, weeks and months. If that's not realistic for your lifestyle, consider these common technology management strategies:
- Don't allow cell phones at the dinner table
- "Unplug" periodically throughout the day
- Don't allow devices during family time
- Turn off your social media notifications
- Limit time spent watching TV