It’s safe to say the internet and social media can be a pretty addictive thing. As well as having so many incredible benefits – think about our recent lockdown and how everyone stayed connected online, dated virtually and did everything online – it also certainly has some downfalls too. I’ve spent most of my life within the past decade online, I’ve definitely fell victim to it once or twice. Which is why I think everyone needs to have a digital detox.
If it wasn’t for social media and the internet, I wouldn’t have a job. The same can be said for a lot of people who rely on the internet for their businesses. The internet has opened up a whole world of opportunity. And for that, it’ll never be considered a bad thing. BUT… and there’s always a but. Like everything, it comes with it’s negative points too.
If you’re a blogger, you’ll be familiar with the drama that can found online and within the blogging community. Even less serious things like FOMO and feeling like you’re getting addicted to your phone are all valid reasons why having a digital detox is important. So…
What is a digital detox?
A digital detox is spending a given amount of time away from anything digital. Of course you make your own rules when it comes to how you’re going to approach your digital detox. You might go cold turkey and not look at your phone, use your laptop or watch TV at ALL during your digital detox.
Or you might go a little softer and just not use social media (which is what I do). But whatever you choose and however you decide to go ahead with your digital detox, it’s important to do it for the right reasons and gain the incredible benefits from getting offline and off of social media for a while!
Why should you have a digital detox?
It helps you stay present: Whenever I have a digital detox, it really helps me be more present with my “actual” life, as opposed to my “online life”. It helps me connect and stay grounded to what is RIGHT in front of me. Not what I’m looking at through a screen.
It allows you to have a more productive day: We’ve all had those days where we have stuff to do but instead, find ourselves scrolling aimlessly through Twitter and wasting an hour of our lives. Admit it. Not having that option encourages us to have a more productive day and get those pesky jobs done that need doing.
It helps you focus on self care: Self care is best off the screen. In my humble opinion anyway. I feel like you can really get into your own mind, body and spirit and work through what you really need when you’re not influenced by forces online, like blog posts, tweets and news articles.
It’ll help you reevaluate your FOMO: This is a big one for me. I hate being offline for this very reason. I like to be active, I like to be updated, I like to be constantly “on it” (which is another problem I addressed here!) But why? What does it achieve? The internet and social media will still be there when you get back and a digital detox can really help you evaluate what’s really important and worth your energy.
Tips to help you succeed at your digital detox:
When you’re so obsessed with your phone and being online, a digital detox isn’t as easy as just switching everything off and getting on with your day. Because a lot of our days do revolve around technology in some way.
Find a system that works for you: I used to give myself completely work free, social media free, internet free days off – which just left me feeling bored and miserable every single time. I would just end up napping for hours, giving myself a headache and then not able to concentrate on anything. So I quickly realised that DOESN’T work for me! Your digital detox might look different from someone else’s and that’s okay!
Choose a day where you’re busy: It’s much easier to stay offline and off of social media if you’re busy anyway. So to make things easier for yourself, try and choose a day where you already have plans. Perhaps you’re going out for the day or you’re busy in work meetings.
Or make plans for that particular day: Or if you have no days coming up where you’re actively going to be busy all day, then make plans for yourself. Pencil in a day in your diary to have a de-clutter of your house or re-vamp your garden. Something that will encourage you to stay away from your phone.
Set screen time limits on your phone: If you have an iPhone, you can set screen time limits on all apps. This is a great option for anyone – like me – who’s like a magpie when it comes to notifications. If i see a notification… I have to read it! So I set my screen time limits so I can’t see the notifications!
Okay, so what do I do instead?
Well of course that’s entirely up to you what you do instead, it depends on your individual hobbies, goals and passions. But it’s important not to go straight to the “well, what shall I do now?” mindset when you’re having a digital detox. Because yes, there’s a LOT you can do online. But there’s also a whole world out there away from the screen too! Here are some suggestions of what you can do instead:
[…] media and spend more time in the “real” world. Heck, just this month I spoke about why you should have a digital detox! But if the COVID situation has taught us anything, it’s the importance that technology and […]
[…] body wants. Is it a healthy meal? Is it a nap? 4. Write down 10 things you like about yourself 5. Switch off from the constant chatter of social media for a whole day 6. Challenge your limiting beliefs and re-write your own story 7. De-clutter your […]
[…] Why You Should Have a Digital Detox (and What To Do Instead) […]
[…] Related read: Why You Should Have A Digital Detox (& What To Do Instead) […]
[…] me the most and that was getting AWAY from the situation that was making me feel down. Having a digital detox – even just for one day – really gave me the head space I needed. I had my digital […]
[…] Related read: Why You Should Have A Digital Detox (+ What To Do Instead) […]
Such an important post! I can often find myself overwhelmed if I spend too much time online, and stepping away from social media on occasions does wonders for my mental health. I like your list of things to do instead, that’s usually an area I struggle with so I found that super helpful! Thanks 🙂 x
Thank you 😌 I literally can’t cope if I don’t have time away from social media anymore – it’s sooo draining!!!
I really need to have a digital detox. It shouldn’t be difficult as I’m expending many hours outside nowadays because of the good weather. Thanks for the tips!
I think this is so important. Being online all the time can be so encompassing and the detachment from reality is very real. I try to take most Saturdays offline as I find it the easiest day to do other stuff and not feel like I’m missing anything x
I agree – I’ve never considered the detachment from reality aspect before but you’re totally right x
I love, love, love to digital detox on a fairly regular basis! I always feel so much better after a day away from social media because it can be so toxic and annoying. Nothing like living in the moment and being super present with your environment and the different things or people you’re surrounded with!
I totally agree! I’m thinking about making it a weekend thing tbh!
Oooh, yes like a digital sabbath! Love that x
I’ve had an accidental detox of recent days and it has felt good! I depend on my blog and my phone for so much but it’s been nice to spend some time away!
Okay, no lie – I love nothing more than leaving my phone at home and going for a run or walk. It feels so freeing to not even have it on me so I don’t worry about checking it at all!
On The Cusp | http://on-th3-cusp.blogspot.com/
I really need to do that more often!
This is a great post with some really helpful tips. I’ve been trying to limit how much time I spend on my phone too. We are lucky that there are ways to schedule content and tweets etc so that we can still have a social media presents without constantly being online.
I agree! I love scheduling for that reason!
This was an interesting read. For me, a digital detox is more on how I can use social media in a positive and a productive way. I find speaking to amazing friends and using Facebook to promote my blog posts are 2 productive and positive ways of using social media which I find improve my wellbeing. If I am using social media in a productive way rather than using it to scroll through my Facebook feed for an hour then I am happy. Of course, what counts as positive and productive use of social media is different for everyone. But I do think a digital detox in terms of using social media less helps realise the ways in which you can use social media in a more positive and productive way.
Are there ways you can use social media in a positive way? Just something to think about 🙂 – thanks for a great article!!
Thanks for sharing this it was what I needed to read! I completely agree that keeping busy is a great thing to do when going through a digital detox too. I’ll often sit down to watch a film or a couple of episodes of something but end up reaching for my phone after the first few minutes – the only time I don’t end up doing it is when I’m ironing or something at the same time! 😂 I’ve had a couple of days off work recently so I’ve been making an effort to sit and read a book – I find books are such a good way to have a digital detox as you have to focus on the text in front of you rather than anything else! x
Totally agree! I actually love watching movies and things when I’m having a social media detox because it’s the only time I’m actually focused on the film rather than scrolling through my phone!
I decided to take a break from Twitter a few weeks ago and I haven’t felt the urge to go back. You’re right about the blogging drama over there… Somewhere along the line I decided to extend my detox to all other social media platforms and I feel so much more relaxed. I never thought I would get to this point since I used to be so addicted to social media, but I definitely agree that everyone should do a digital detox!
Sounds great! It’s hard when social media is so important for blog growth but a day off here and there is so important.
I’m actually thinking of taking one of these next weekend – the past few weeks have been insane and I’ve been consistently glued to a screen, which isn’t great. I’m thinking of maybe focusing on some creative activities to re-energise my brain!
It’s nice to have a few days away from social media sometimes xx
It sure is x
I totally agree with you about doing a digital detox. I try to do this during the weekday to avoid burnouts. I only touch my DM group chat at most. Love the alternative activities!
Nancy ✨ exquisitely.me
They’re so beneficial!
Excellent post! We all need a digital detox on a routine basis. When we were children, we made time for ‘daydreaming’. This might have happened almost anywhere; we would slip into a private reverie. Children play and they daydream. They learn about the world and they learn about themselves; they ‘grow’ their imaginations. As adults, we need time when our minds can rest from the world, so to speak. In these quiet moments we discover so much. It is not wasted time, but time well-spent recharging our batteries.
I totally agree – great comment!
I try to do this, to some extent, every once in a while. Like you I find limiting social media is the most effective way to do this. We really can waste so much time scrolling through endless feeds on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram. It’s liberating to have a break every so often. I might try the screen limits trick!
Totally agree. Social media is definitely the best thing to detox from!
These are such a great suggestions! I personally don’t touch my phone when I use my laptop to work (for hours). If it’s not important, I won’t check or reply any single messages or notifications lol. It helps me to stay focus and productive every day 🙂
Wow don’t know how you can do that ahah!
Like you, I rely on my phone and laptop for my job and have done for the better part of 20 years. Switching off is hard, and never more so now I’m a blogger too (!) but a digital detox is a must. Being wholly present in front of my loved ones at the weekends is so important, for my relationships with them as well as my own peace of mind. I treasure my digital-free weekends, you’re right, it’s like a reset button. Great post, Jenny! xxx
Lisa | http://www.lisasnotebook.com
Sounds like you really need those digital detoxes! I’m planning one for this Sunday and I really can’t wait. I definitely also feel reset the day after too! xxx
This is a really interesting and different article. I love the way you write and how honest you are. We all need this. I guess it’s time for a detox in my life now. Thank you for sharing with us.
Thank you very much 🙂
This is a great post. I find myself on social media wayyyy too much. I always find something else to do or more blogs to read. Having a break is really important, especially as the light isn’t the best for your eyes. Thank you for sharing this list, I love the checklist. It’s very cute!
Em | http://www.loveemblog.com
Exactly. Switching off at night is mega important too because of the blue light from your phone and devices! Can wreck havoc on your sleep!
Tbh, I think that you are way more disciplined than I am! Sure, I stay off of social media except WP and YouTube, but I feel like you already have the discipline to accomplish big goals…. I think it’s super cool that you wrote not only one, but two eBooks! That’s so cool!
I feel like our digital devices are designed to hook us and get us addicted to the same routines, day in, day out. I am slowly trying to break free of these routines that are not only big time wasters, but don’t really contribute much value to our lives. Everything I can do from my phone, I can do from a laptop. There are maybe 2 or 3 apps that only work on my phone but either than that, I am slowly making the switch. I am much more aware when I am working from a laptop compared to mindlessly scrolling through my phone.
Great post, its definitely important to take some days every so often for a digital detox. If I’m having a day from any screen then I like to play board games or card games or go out somewhere. I don’t do it very often I have to admit, but I do have a few days here and there where I won’t go on social media or do blog things – mainly because I’ve been staring at my work laptop most days anyway so after work my brain is just too exhausted! Fab tips!
Yeah I can totally understand that! Thanks lovely xxx
Such a great list! I am in need of a digital detox for sure. We’re going camping next weekend so hoping to make that my digital detox!
Perfect time to detox!
Love this! This is something I really need to be better about. Especially lately. I haven’t worked in months due to covid-19, and we’re being encouraged to stay home as much as possible. So I work in my blog alot and am constantly connected. Much more so than I used to be when working (although I’ve definitely always been the obsessive notification checker). I love your tip of doing this on days you’re busy already. I’ll try it!
Thank you – hope you manage to have a bit of a detox soon!
Thank you for sharing your suggestions! Reading this, all I could think about was which day I could choose to do this. Being in nature makes me feel the most relaxed and I can’t wait to plan a day outside and not check my phone all day! X
Sounds lovely. Weekends are usually a good time!
I really need to do this – I’m constantly just scrolling thought my phone. might try this at the weekend 🙂
Yes definitely do!
Love this post! I find it so hard to stay off social media / technology (unless I’m working or with friends / family), especially as a blogger and when there is so much going on in the world!
Exactly it’s so hard to switch off!
Okay, Sunday for me. No FaceBook, no emails, no writing work but I still have to watch my tv at night. Here goes wish me luck.
Good luck! Sounds like the perfect day!
I loved this !
I love how you said social media detoxes are different for everyone and look different for everyone !
I personally don’t touch my phone at all when I’m on a digital detox and only use my laptop to check for important emails.
It’s very important to detox and give yourself time to be present and to spend some time in your real life !
Totally important! I’m still on my phone but only for things like Netflix!
These are all amazing suggestions! The thing I find the hardest to do in terms of keeping away from my phone is keeping away from listening to music, I literally have to hide my phone and headphones haha 😂
Ah I wouldn’t even count that. On my detox days I still use YouTube and listen to music 😌
Love the idea of a digital detox, it’s so easy to get consumed in everything that’s going on online all the time! Your tips for having a proper digital detox are great too, so I’ll definitely be trying them out!
It really is – so so easy!
I always try to have a digital detox once a week, which usually ends up once a month because I fail. But even if I fail I end up doing some busy work, like gardening or cleaning ^^
You really have some great suggestions here 🙂 Thanks for sharing!
At least you try though!
Some great suggestions of what you can do during your digital detox 🙂 I’m definitely overdue one although I am actively trying to reduce my non-working screen time.
Kathryn // http://www.theglutenfreecheerleader.com
That’s exactly what I’m trying to do. I’m due one as well. Hopefully you can get some detoxing in this week!
I’d love to do this – I might do it this Sunday x
Go for it!
This is so useful! I’ve been trying to do it staying off social media but then I end up spending the day scheduling social for blog stuff so I may not have twitter open… but I have three different apps related to it instead. This is really inspiring me to actually try it properly and have some decent internet free time. Thanks for the tips on how to do it!
NOOOO haha! You’re on the right track though. Try have a social media free day entirely!
I’ve done a digital detox in the past and it really does your mind and wellbeing the world of good! It does help you become more productive and it makes me feel more positive! x
Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk
It really does! I’m well in need of one!
Some very good tips here and what to do! I did this recently and it was a amazing! I took nearly 3 weeks off and I just had a pamper and more me time!
Great post 🙂
Mel 🌙 | Moonlight Mel
Wow that sounds amazing!
I needed this so much right now. I feel like I’ve become even more attached to my phone since lockdown began and FOMO is real. That said, I’ve been thinking about having a digital detox every other week and dedicate my day drawing, reading, baking instead. Thanks for sharing! x
Evie x | http://www.eviejayne.co.uk
That sounds perfect! Hope you get to do it soon!
Thanks for sharing your tips, I had a facebook detox once after a personal problem got me rarer upset, I have thought of doing it again 🙂
Nic | Nic’s Adventures & Bakes
Detox all your socials! You’ll thank me for it!
This is definitely needed, too much screen time gives me a headache and makes me feel ill so I have to be careful anyway. To much twitter can also give me a headache…
It can have such amazing physical benefits too of taking time away from screens as you know!
Great post! Thank you for sharing your tips! I always try to have a digital detox when I go on holiday or day trips so I can enjoy my time there!
Those are great times to have digital detoxes!
I do this on the weekends and its wonderful. I’m thinking of spreading it into my weekday nights as well. It’s so relaxing.
Sounds like a good plan!
I think a detox is definitely something to do every week. My phone has a 15 minute limit for social media, and I was pretty good at abiding with that until lockdown began and I needed those apps to feel connected to the world. So my 15 minute warning comes on and I just click no limits for the day. But I’m trying not to be on it a ridiculous amount at least.
Yeah that’s the feature I have as well but my screen limits go on at 9pm so no social media for me after then!
This is so real to me right now. I’ve been on social media constantly during lockdown and it is definitely increasing my stress (which is already high because of the pandemic!). But I think like you, I just can’t quit cold turkey. I think the best strategy for me, as you mention above, would be timed engagement with social media. If I set a certain amount of time during a certain time of day, that’ll probably help me a lot…instead of just wandering mindlessly over to Facebook and scrolling through absentmindedly and wasting a ton of time. Great post!
Thank you! I’ve also found my screen useage shoot up since lockdown! You don’t have to go cold turkey to get the benefits though. I think social media is the key here. That’s the thing that has the negative implications!
Loved this post. Digital detoxing is so important for one’s mental health.
It sure is 😌
I definitely need to spend less time online. I always feel so much better for it when I’ve had a day without any social media x
Tiffany x http://www.foodandotherloves.co.uk
Oh me too. Hope you get to do it soon!
This is an excellent post. FOMO isn’t really an issue for me so I have never done a digital detox. If I try it, I will use your tips.
I think a digital detox is useful for anyone – fomo or not! But glad fomo doesn’t affect you!
Great tips, I should definitely spend more time offline. I travelled round Cuba a few years ago and had no internet for two weeks, had to find different ways of working out how to get about, wasn’t constantly scrolling – it was glorious
Oh wow that sounds amazing and such an adventure!
It really was, it reminded me you meet some pretty cool people when you’ve to ask humans for directions and information rather than Google 😁😂😁
Love this post! I always try to have at least one digital detox a week. I agree with you that on that day I like to be busy etc because that helps with the not wanting to scroll etc. Also I might have to try out that screen time limit, at the moment I just put night time mode on and it doesn’t notify me etc xx
The screen time feature is amazing! Definitely give it a go!
Good advice! I will try to do a digital detox at least once per week!
Yes! Glad to hear it!
Some great strategies Jenny… I work on a desktop and take frequent breaks.. my mobile phone is only for the occasional text and call.. more to have when out in case of an emergency.. I have cut back my sites to FB, Twitter, LinkedIn and my blog as I found most of my day was spent commenting to the same people within the community but on different sites.
Glad you seem to have found a good balance of your time on and off the screen!
I really need to do this! I am obsessed with my phone, or iPad or laptop. I’m bored, or I have 30 seconds to spare and I instantly pick my phone up. I think I’m going to give this a try. Just for a few hours at first though, I need to ease myself in 🤣🤣🙈
Yes that sounds like me. My first instinct is to ALWAYS pick up my damn phone!
These are some great tips here – I personally have never tried a digital detox but I think I should; sometimes the internet can become a all consuming thing; especially when there are blogs and various social medias to run! Thank you for sharing; definitely agree that one digital detox won’t be the same as someone else’s – it’s highly personal!
Paige // Paige Eades
Yes it’s totally all consuming especially being a blogger I find!
This is something I need to do! I already turned off my notifications so I look at things in my own time but I need to limit my screen time, didn’t realise you could do that with an iPhone. Thank you for sharing x
Turning off notifications is a fab idea!
I love this! I’ve taken time of socials recently and felt guilty, but you’ve helped me embrace it! Thank you
Oh I totally get that feeling but don’t you dare feel guilty!