These days, I am making unplugging a priority. I am sure many of you can relate to this. I personally find it very hard to turn off my phone or ignore my phone for more than an hour. I have developed this need to be extremely responsive – in social media, in my professional life, and in my personal life. Leaving people hanging gives me anxiety. I have this irrational fear that I will be missing something or that I won’t be there for someone if they need me. My mom always tells me that I am the most reliable of her children when it comes to answering the phone. That’s nice and all, but I have realized that this adds unnecessary pressure to my life and takes away from me being present.
About a week ago, I turned off my phone for 30 hours. I was up in Muskoka, Canada (pictured above) to spend a weekend with 18 people who are very special to myself and my family. At first, I had a little bit of trouble shutting off. Again, that fear of missing something was lingering. But thankfully Jacob was there to take my phone and put it away. The detox was easy for me. So much easier than I thought. Granted, I was in a beautiful place, on a lake, surrounded by my loved ones. No one was on their phone. Everyone was engaging in conversation, playing games or reading. I read a whole book! I haven’t done that in years. I felt super accomplished. This is not to say that digital detoxing is easy at all. It isn’t! My environment for this initial “trial” – if you will – was totally ideal. It was a good place to start.
Although the detox went well, I found the challenge came when I turned my phone back on. Once the notifications started rolling in – I felt a little bit of that fear come back. I expected this, but it definitely lingered a little. I let it pass.
So, what have I taken from this experience? I learned to understand and develop boundaries. In this blog post, I will share some of the new boundaries I am working on implementing in my life when it comes to technology and social media. These actions and small steps are working towards a greater goal of mine. The goal to be more present in daily life. I want to eliminate the lingering feeling that I am missing something. Because objectively – I know that I am not. See below.
1) Bed time daily detox:
I am not perfect at this, but it is something I am really trying to implement above all else. If I am going to sleep at 10:30 pm, I aim to put my phone away at 8:30 pm. Having that chunk of time without any blue light or social media stimulation allows my mind to calm down and body to settle into sleep mode. This is a great time to read, go for an evening walk or meal prep. It is amazing how much more productive you are when you aren’t checking Instagram and emails constantly.
2) Meal Time:
So for me, meal time is actually a time where I capture a lot of content for my Instagram or my recipes. But once I have captured the shot or the video for the story, I put my phone down. At least I am trying to! I find this helps me pay attention more to the food I am eating and in turn, I enjoy it more. Plus, it makes the meal all that more satisfying. And most importantly, if you are with others, it can be interpreted as rude and distracting to constantly be on your phone. Just something to bear in mind.
I love when I am at a workout spot and I see the sign “no phones in the studio”. I really respect this. Especially with something like yoga or spin where the mental presence is so integral to the activity. I have walked into other classes where people stop and check their phone and I find it very distracting & off-putting. It is such a good time to really just connect with your body and get the best out of your workout. You can take that hour or so to yourself. It is not selfish. For a lot of people, that is the only time they get to themselves all day. Take advantage!
All in all – the more I get into this Instagram and blogging world, the more I find the importance of doing this. These little conscious changes have gone a long way for me and I hope to see more improvement in the future.
That is it, that is all.