We created a 7-day digital detox as a reset for anyone who finds themselves addicted to digital devices. We get it. A complete digital detox is just not realistic for many people especially if your work revolves around technology.
We're not saying the goal is to remove technology out of your routine forever, but it's important to take note of when your phone starts to interrupt real-world social interactions. It's also important to remember that digital eye strain and computer vision syndrome is a real thing.
That's why we created a 7-day challenge that focuses on accumulating habits while allowing you to continue to use your digital devices in moderation.
So here's how it works...
On Day 1, you'll practice one new habit. On Day 2, you'll practice 2 new habits. One habit from day 1 and the new habit for day 2. You'll keep on adding one new habit each day. That means by day 7, you'll have implemented 7 new habits that'll help you find a balance between screen time and living life outside of your computer and/or phone.
The great thing about this challenge is that it doesn't have to end after 7 days. These are habits you can apply and incorporate for life.
Day 1: Designate a time in the morning to do something mindful before checking your phone or computer. This could be making coffee, meditating, stretching, or taking 5 minutes to list some things you're grateful for before the day starts. We just want to make sure that your phone isn't the first thing you're focusing on in the morning.
Day 2: Ever find yourself holding your phone while doing the most basic tasks? Whether you're socializing with a friend or picking up your coffee order, try and refrain from holding your phone when it's not being used. We recommend keeping it in a bag, leaving it in the car, or simply keeping it in your back pocket when it's not needed.
Day 3: Refrain from using any tech devices at least 1 hr before bed. You've probably heard about blue light and its effects on sleep cycles (aka circadian rhythm), but the mental stimulation from using a device before bed can affect your ability to wind down before it's time to sleep. Making your bedroom a "device-free zone" is a good place to start.
Day 5: Commit to one physical activity a day. These activities include a yoga class, going for a run or walk, or lifting some weights. If you're device plays music, then set the playlist, put the phone down and walk away.
Day 6: Aside from the morning, set a 2-hour tech-free slot on your schedule. During this time, you can do something that puts your mind in the present. Activities include meditating, calling a family or friend to chat,
Day 7: We get it. Sometimes a phone can serve as a great distraction while waiting for something. Whether your waiting for an order at a restaurant, waiting in line, or watching your kids play in the backyard, a phone can help fill in those times of "non-activity". Instead, stay present at the moment and take that time to notice your surroundings.
The great thing about this challenge is that its realistic. Nothing about these 7 habits would be hard to implement in the long run. Don't expect all of these habits to stick. You may find that only a handful of these habits end up sticking, but this is still better than having not started at all. Ultimately, it's important to remember that the main goal of the digital detox is to simply challenge you to be more aware of how often you're using your device while giving your eyes a break.