You need to put your phone down (not right now though, finish this first).
Like most people, you may wake up and grab your phone first thing in the morning before you’re spending 8+ hours staring at a desktop/laptop, whether you’re working from home or back in the office then you’re getting caught up on TV series, movies and/or social media posts. It’s not that technology is bad. It’s just that it’s nonstop.
Looking for a new recipe? Find one on Pinterest.
Need a new scarf? Buy it on Amazon.
Setting the mood? Queue new music in Spotify.
There are so many pros to having computers and access to the internet with us everywhere we go. There is also so much information available at all times that it leads to an overload. The average person checks their devices every 6.5 minutes. How can you feel at peace, when your phone is distracting you this often in a day? You’re due for a break from being plugged in constantly.
Reconnect with yourself
Convenience is great but the downside to being over-connected is that it erodes our relationship with ourselves in tiny, ignorable ways. Our devices can bring so much accessibility and productivity to the work we do in our lives but if we don’t carve out quiet time to spend with our thoughts and feelings, bigger problems develop and eventually make practicing being present more difficult.
Find a silent space to sit and take time to examine your thoughts. Meditating for at least 5-10 minutes a day can improves your self-awareness, lower your stress or anxiety levels and improve your self-esteem. Meditating also improves your focus. Think of this as an added benefit for when you are in front of another screen. With improved focus, you’ll be able to get more of the things you want done.
Journaling is another common way to tap into some inner feelings and thoughts that might go unnoticed in your day-to-day living. Finding a place to write and check in with yourself emotionally by just recounting the events of your day or writing out your hopes for your present or future is a good way to reconnect with yourself.
You might even be able to disconnect from technology long enough to hear a hidden truth that’s been waiting to be found in your heart.
Reconnect with others
Our relationship with ourselves may be number one but number two would be our relationships with other people. Our society has long praised independence as the way of existence but we get the best out of life when we operate with the mindset of interdependence. Interdependence entertains the idea that humans are built for mutually dependent relationships and collaboration. Combat the belief that most people are islands. We are more like peninsulas.
Reconnect with your friends or family. If you can, spend some screen-less time doing the things you enjoy, like, reading aloud, putting puzzles together, hiking, a HIIT circuit. If you aren’t able to visit your loved ones because of social distancing or you live in different areas, become pen pals and send handwritten letters through the mail between text messages and video calls.
While you’re waiting in line at the grocery store or some other place, start a conversation with a stranger. Really listen to what they say to you and when you’re done, tell them you appreciated talking to them. You can journal later about how the interaction made you feel.
Reconnect with nature
Nature sustains us with most of what we need: food, water, air, sunlight. It makes so much sense that we should have a relationship with the earth just like we do with ourselves and others. Simply being in nature can reduce blood pressure, anxiety, anger and muscle tension. It can make you feel better emotionally.
Tap into the benefits of nature by bringing some of it into your home. Plant a micro garden of herbs in the windowsill if you don’t have space to plant a larger garden outside. You can also bring in some houseplants to strategically place throughout your place to improve the air quality in your home.
Get outdoors for a 15-30 minute walk. Walking in your neighborhood might spark a new idea for a creative project you want to start.
Accept the challenge
For the brave at heart, put your phone on airplane mode, avoid the laptop, and decide to step away from binging your favorite show for 24 hours.
Disconnect for one day and see the beauty of life unfolding in front of your eyes.