SEPTEMBER 10, 2019
What exactly is a digital detox?
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.
We truly live in a digital age. While the influx of technological advancements has proven to assist in connecting the world, it also has disconnected individuals from the world around them. Research completed by Deloitte’s mobile consumer survey highlighted how often the average individual looks at their phone on a daily basis.
However, this is not going to be a “all technology is evil” Black Mirror style exposé. We simply feel taking a digital detox occasionally will improve both your productivity and mental well-being. Below, we outline the three crucial benefits we feel you will instantly notice after taking a short break from your screens.
Important vs social digital engagements
You may use your screens for your business, therefore meaning a digital detox would be difficult. However, many of us are often engaged in the trivialities in what your old colleague had for lunch, or what your best friend is doing on their vacation in the Italian countryside. These digital engagements, albeit interesting, are not productive to your work. It is important to distinguish what is urgent and what is escapism. Taking a break away from your device will allow you to gain perspective on what you need to do to succeed in your current endeavours.
In person interaction
Mentally, meeting in person boosts numerous endorphins in your brain, resulting in a better mood and productivity. The more you are on your phone, the more you set yourself up to develop sleeping problems. A grumpy individual with a night full of broken sleep will simply not be anywhere near as productive as an individual who is fully rested.
Alongside this, meeting an important client or interviewee in person builds an instant rapport, therefore resulting in better business connections. It is an instant turn-off when you are sat with somebody who is constantly on their phone, it feels disengaged and impersonal. Turn the phone off, and take some time to give whoever you are speaking with the full attention they deserve.
“It is important to distinguish what is urgent and what is escapism.”
The real and the virtual
By removing yourself from the digital world, you allow yourself to distinguish what is real and what is virtual, two states which are constantly blurring into one. We understand your technology may be crucial to you and your work, so why not try with just half an hour everyday? Take time to breathe, or read a chapter of that book you have been meaning to start. Taking time away to disconnect will reconnect you to your goals.
Rest your brain (and your self-esteem)
Extreme and frequent usage of technology is guaranteed to give you adverse health effects. These can range from eye strain to sleeping problems to even your self-esteem. Remember, what is shown online is selective. If you were to get ready for an important event, you would not wear your comfy loungewear, but instead opt for your most prestigious outfit. Online life is exactly the same. Online presentation of the self is curated in a similar manner to our physical presentation. Therefore, what is seen is not a true depiction. Do not compare yourself to individuals who seem to have it all figured out. Taking time away from false images will allow you to realise you are on the right track to success.
It is imperative to learn how to moderate your technology use, yes it is useful to your life but it is not intrinsic to your existence. Don’t be nervous to take time out for yourself, after all, you are the most important person on the road to self success.
For further reading, we recommend reading “OFF” by Tanya Goodin or “Hyperreality and Simulacrum” by Jean Baudrillard.