How To Plan a Successful Tech Detox
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” — Benjamin Franklin
How many times have you looked at your phone today? I imagine you’ve been inseparable since you opened your eyes. Every free minute you’ve been aimlessly scrolling.
Maybe you need tech detox.
A tech detox is a straightforward idea. You remove technology from your life for an allocated amount of time.
To let your mind relax and remove the stresses from being constantly connected. You are now connected to everyone and everything, 24/7. Anything you want to know can be found in a matter of seconds. Your brain is constantly stimulated. This can be detrimental to your psychological wellbeing.
Slowly, the detrimental effects of too much screen time are becoming apparent. It is easy to forget the adverse side effects.
The side effects can range from sleep deprivation to loss of cognitive ability. The time spent in front of a screen can even weaken your emotional judgement.
Here are some benefits of tech detox.
- A More Conscious Approach To Technology.
- The Benefits Of Reducing Screen time.
- Less Comparison.
- Better Mental Health.
- Improved Brain Function.
- More Restful Sleep.
- Better Posture.
- Better Hormonal And Cellular Health.
I knew I was spending too much time looking at a screen. I’d felt lost without my device, feeling the urge to look constantly at the screen. One time, I had Medium open on my computer and reached for my phone and opened it on that as well.
I knew I needed a detox.
Here are 5 points to help you have a successful detox.
1 — Why?
“He who has a why can endure any how.”
— Frederick Nietzsche
Before you begin your detox, you need to establish why you need the detox. Your needs are different from mine. Technology may affect you in different ways.
Is technology negatively affecting your life? Will you even benefit from a detox?
The main reason for my detox was my lack of attention. My device would steal my attention at least once every 10 minutes. Regardless of which situation I was in, I felt the need to unlock my phone and look at it. I was opening random apps in the hope of some sort of stimulation.
This not only disrupted social situations but totally ruined my concentration during productive times. I’d find I couldn’t concentrate when trying to be productive and write.
Look at how your device is affecting your life to find the reason to complete your detox.
2 — Planning
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
— Benjamin Franklin
Planning will be the key to a successful detox. You may need to notify family members or work colleagues. Of course, this is situation-dependent. Maybe you feel like just going dark and disappearing for a weekend. Letting those closest to you know about your plans to reduce stress. I’d advise setting someone as a point of contact, just in case there are any emergencies. This will reduce stress even more so.
Once your device is off, your brain will try to convince you to have a cheeky look. That little voice inside your head will tell you sweet nothings to get that dopamine hit. It will cause you to fantasise about all the fantastic things you could look at on your phone.
Trust me, my brain was conjuring up the most ridiculous reasons ever. It was an actual test of willpower to ignore the voice.
3 — Rules
“It’s your game: make up your own rules.”
— Barbara Corcoran
It’s your detox. You can set your own rules and boundaries.
4 — Replace the medium
“Today’s child is growing up absurd because he lives in two worlds, and neither of them inclines him to grow up.”
― Marshall McLuhan
When was the last time you picked up a book? You have become so dependent on technology for every medium source. This is, no doubt, a distant memory. You are forever distracted by social media and notifications.
When planning your detox, think of which medium you’ll use to replace that void in your life. Whether that be a new book, an art project, or getting lost in the forest with your family. It is best to have a source of entertainment to keep your mind distracted. Especially if you’re stuck at home right now.
Grab yourself a new book and aim to finish it during your detox. I started reading “Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas” and finished it in one day. This was a fantastic feeling that added to my detoxing experience.
5 — Build better habits
“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.”
Each time you finish detox, you will feel a sense of accomplishment. You will re-enter the matrix with a clear head and a better idea of how to deal with your tech addiction.
You should review your experience.
What did you learn from the detox?
Would you consider doing another detox?
If so, how regularly would you complete it?
Keep a note of this list so you can refer to it each time you complete another detox. Each time you will create stronger habits to transfer to your day-to-day life. Whether that be consciously spending less time on your device or removing the useless apps from your phone (Instagram & Facebook, I’m looking at you).
Taking the first steps towards the detox will set you on the right path. Then consider using the tips laid out in this article.
1 — Find your reason
2 — Plan
3 — Set some rules
4 — Replace the medium
5 — Build better habits
Once the detox is over, take some extra time before reconnecting to your digital life. Think about what you’ve learned from the experience, and consider what you could do differently next time.
I hope you realise the benefits you can gain from taking some time away from technology.