MINDFUL HABITS TO MANAGE DIGITAL OVERWHELM

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Technological advances have put the world at our fingertips, but is being connected all of the time really good for us? 

UK adults spend an average of 8 hours 41 minutes a day on screens (more time than they are asleep). The average user logs 1.72 hours a day on social media alone and checks their smartphone 150 times a day.

As our dependency on digital devices increases, we deny our brain important downtime and the capacity for deep-thinking and maintained focus. The impact of constant digital distraction has led to a rise in a number of mental health issues including anxiety, insomnia, and depression.

Constant connection to the digital world makes it difficult to be fully present in our real lives, focus on our priorities, and to fully switch off.

Here are 5 ways you can implement the principles of a 'digital detox' into your daily life.

1. Put away your phone at meal times.

Switching off devices at meal times is a great habit to get into not only because it limits total screen time but it also allows you to refocus on relaxing, digesting your meal, enjoying the experience of eating and the company of others at the table.

2. Establish Digital Boundaries

Schedule designated times to check your emails, then get on with getting stuff done. Instead of leaping and responding to every notification or call that appears on your phone, set specific times during they where your phone is switched off so you can focus on getting work done. 

3. Go on a digital detoxing adventure

Leave your phones, laptops and tablets behind and go on an adventure for a day, a week or just a few hours. Choose a place without Wifi and preferably outdoors to give your mind an opportunity to reconnect with the natural world.

4. Take up a non-screen based hobby

If your work demands hours staring at a screen, take up a hobby that takes you away from that like swimming, yoga or pottery. Hobbies that allow you to recconect with the physical world are a great way to counteract mutiple hours spent absorbed in the digital space. 

5. Banish Mobiles and Laptops From The Bedroom

The blue backlight emitted from digital devices disruppts our melatonin production that is necessary for us to sleep. For this reason, keeping mobiles and laptops out of the bedroom will greatly improve your sleep quality, mood and productivity levels throughout the day.

How would a mindful approach to your time spent online impact your day?

Share your comments below.

By Amber McCormick