Well, I was pretty much forced into a tech detox by my furry little four-legged friend. Reese requires a ton of attention and during house-training, I’m constantly on “pee alert”, so that makes scrolling through Instagram repeatedly a non-starter…which is great. I’ve come to learn that my expensive floor rug means a whole lot more to me than a certain amount of likes on a pic.
The main thing I’ve noticed about this forced tech detox is how happy I’ve been! The comparisons to other people I don’t even know has stopped. I no longer agonize over follows, likes, and posting schedules. The dull ache in my neck that I’ve become accustomed to is gone…and I’ve trained Reese to come, sit, lie down for belly rubs and shake a paw in record time. All amazing things in my “tech-free book”.
Walking around sans iPhone glued in my hand has inspired me to create this little guide for the rest of you who are thinking about a little tech detox of your own. After all, this is a really healthy thing to do! With social media taking a serious toll on our relationships, general happiness and over-all mental health, we could all probably use this right about now. So, go forth tech-free and enjoy the present without any of the FOMO.
Keep Your Phone Out Of Your Bedroom
This was a gamechanger for me. I went to bed checking Instagram and woke up checking Instagram, and you know what? I hated it. There are only a few times that I’m inspired by social media but for the most part, it left me feeling a little empty.
I started giving my phone to my husband about an hour or so before bedtime. Trading in the social media rabbit hole for luxurious baths and snuggling with a good book set the tone for a great night’s sleep. Agonizing over whether or not I should buy a Chloé Nile bag because So-And-So featured the amazing pink one on her feed? Not so much.
I read a disturbing article about how all millennials will have humpbacks when they are older and treatments for tech neck are on the rise. Omigod. Maybe the “humpback” thing was a little overblown, but tech neck is not.
Tech neck occurs when you are staring at your device for hours on end. It causes pain in your neck, upper back and shoulders, along with speeding up sagging in your delicate neck skin, jowls and marked crease in your clavicle. Premature aging of your neck is a surefire way to look older than your years. Not good.
I’ll be the first to admit that I have been addicted to my phone and iPad forever so I started treating my neck with a little respect. Along with putting down the phone, I moisturize my poor little neck with Jouviance Contour +.
Loaded with collagen, it plumps up delicate neck skin and wrinkles, softens and hydrates, tightens up the skin and boosts skin’s volume. No turkey neck here. No way.
Unfollow Those Who Make You Unhappy
I don’t hate meme accounts but I unfollowed most. I just get nothing done as I scroll through them and laugh for hours
I cleaned up my social media and it was one of the best things I ever did. I’m human. I followed a ton of accounts that made me feel a little envious and a bit like I didn’t measure up. Biting the bullet and unfollowing them was liberating. Unfollowing a bunch of accounts that I never checked too felt great. The best was unfollowing people who complain non-stop online. Stop the toxicity! For your health and mine!!
Now my feeds are full of pictures and articles that I actually care about and inspire me. What a breath of fresh air.
Face Temptation Head On
When my scrolling finger gets anxious and wants to desperately scroll through Instagram for two straight hours or watch YouTube until my eyes bleed, I go for a walk. I pick up a book. Popping in a movie and watching it undistracted is great. Puppy cuddling is a life saver too.
Push Notifications Are The Enemy
Turn off those push notifications. You don’t need them. To say that constant stream of notifications from your social media accounts is “disruptive” is the understatement of the century. Savour your meal. Watch your show. Talk to your loved one…just don’t be distracted by a steady stream of endless notifications.
Give Yourself A “Device Timelimit”
I actually set the timer on my iPhone for a specific amount of time and when it goes off, I put down my phone. I thought it would be hard, but it isn’t at all. I relish putting down my phone and getting things done…or just savouring a little quiet time.
Others Deserve Your Undivided Attention
In December, I saw a widely popular YouTuber at a Christmas party. I was pretty damn excited to get to know him. As I marched over to him to introduce myself, he caught a glimpse of me and put up one finger signaling me to wait while he finished taking selfies in various ridiculous poses (Oh God! Is that how I look too??). He finished up, and I introduced myself, all the while talking to the top of his head. He nodded and smiled as he Snapseeded his shots and uploaded them to his IG stories. I said goodbye and he wished me a Merry Christmas. I don’t think he made eye contact with me once.
This encounter left me feeling small and well, like a loser. I don’t ever want to make anyone feel like that. It was a huge eye opener and from that moment on, I put my damn phone down when people take the time to talk to me.
Are you addicted to your phone? Thinking of a tech detox? Let me know what steps you plan on putting in place to help you live in the present!