After weeks of overdoing it at Christmas, ‘detox’ is the new buzzword. We hear and read about ways of detoxing our bodies through diet and exercise, which also comes hand in hand with better mental health and wellbeing,..but have you ever thought of taking a tech detox? We are more than ever being inundated by the world of social media, and whilst it is often very useful there is another side to it.
If we really stop to consider how addictive the behaviour of checking social media can be, and the times of day and when we do it, you realise how intrusive technology and social media really is. When was the last time you went a whole day without checking a device or working on a computer?
Accessing social media has become second nature to many people. Having the apps installed on mobile phones means a quick check just we fall asleep is common practice, but some people find that this makes it difficult to get to sleep. Infact some experts advise not using our mobiles, or any sort of screen for up to two hours before bed! So put down your phone and pick up a book!
There’s a darker side to facebook that you may have experienced before too. We often reach out to social media for a pick me up, but so often the opposite can happen and social media can leave us feeling lonely, and can dig at our self esteem – it is difficult not to compare our lives with Mrs. Perfect!. There’s a good article about it all here.
Livvy who works in AIRR Clothing says :
‘Looking at other people’s holiday snaps in October is not good for your mental health. #Instamum is a classic example of ‘the best side’ of things. The best side of yourself after careful hair and makeup prep, the best side of family life/ parental life, ie they are asleep or in a rare quite well behaved moment, and the best side of your home environment all finished off with a nice filter on the top. New mums are vulnerable, and starting to get used to a new life, identity and person! Looking at instagram pictures of other mums looking fantastic in lovely places with kids that are extraordinary in some way just makes them feel like they are doing something wrong. We all know the reality is sick down the shoulder, pants tucked in, hair in a mess and just trying to hold it together after many, many broken nights sleep.
So, knowing this, I deleted Facebook app. on my phone. But instead I just access it via safari. I know all this and yet i am completely incapable of looking, checking, sharing and watching what other people have shared. A full detox, is , i think maybe asking a bit much.
What about imposing some limitations though? This might be a healthier way around things. Here’s what I propose:
- Not looking at any social media before 9am (even if you see a notification!)
- Not checking after 8pm earlier if you can
- No social media during family time/ walking time
- Separate work and social e-mails/ media better so that they don’t overlap
- Turn things off. Not so they sleep but actually off. If this means you don’t have an alarm clock, buy an alarm clock!
- Read a book instead before bed! Some recommendations here
- Leave gadgets at home. Take a walk, collect the children from school, do the shopping. Just take a little break from time to time.
- Use the time you free up. Take up new hobbies, plan to achieve the goals you haven’t quite reached yet and reward yourself – you are making steps to breaking a habit afterall.
Do let us know your thoughts on taking a tech detox. Do you have any helpful hints and tips?
Happy New Year!
The AIRR Team! xx
Images given with thanks by pexels.com