This post was inspired by an interview I heard yesterday on NPR. I can’t find a link to it but there’s been plenty of research about the science and befit of unplugging. Certain college professors are challenging their students to hand in their cell phones and not check email or social media for a week and even some news broadcasters have taken the challenge (for news assignments or while on vacation). All these devices are meant to make our lives easier, not to make us slaves to them. I just don’t get it! Here are a few of the benefits of trying to unplug a little on a daily, weekly or monthly (just do it sometime!) basis:
- Giving your brain a rest.
- Giving your eyes a rest.
- Extra time, and who couldn’t use a bit of that!
- More productivity (less continuous distractions).
- More relaxed (De-stress).
- Better focus.
- My personal favorite~MORE CREATIVITY~ideas begin to flow more freely!
I do not personally have a smart phone. I joke with friends and family that I have a stupid phone but secretly I’m glad to be able to have an excuse not to check social media even more frequently. It’s bad enough that society has now made it acceptable for individuals to expect to be able to reach one another instantly. I have a pet peve; when I’m hanging out with friends or family and they instantly stop having a conversation with the people they are with to respond to some text or call from someone elsewhere! How RUDE! How about relating with the people you are with first, then the one’s who are not physically present at a more appropriate time. If you really need to answer or respond, politely excuse yourself and return to the conversation after you are done. This goes for business situations as well as personal ones and frankly if your company doesn’t have a policy of turning your ringers off in meetings maybe you should make it your personal policy. And I’m not even going to mention laws about talking on the phone or texting while driving…Just. Don’t! Okay, rant’s over…sorry!
I sometimes forget to even carry my phone with me and there have been a few times that this mistake caused others quite a bit of worry which I am truly sorry for but just 10 years ago if someone left to run errands and it took longer than expected people didn’t rush to the worst case scenario just because they couldn’t reach them instantly. We need to learn to trust one an-others boundaries again and give people space!
Here are some of the ways I personally practice being unplugged for my own wellness.
I go without news/media at least 3 (up to 5) days a week, that goes for radio, TV and internet.
I try to go without my computer (checking email and social media) at least one day a week.
I don’t use my phone every day for texts or calls. Some-days it can just wait! Just ask my friends who might have tried to reach me:)
My cell phone is not in my bedroom at night, I have a separate battery powered (to minimize EMF’s) alarm clock.
No texting while driving and because I lived in a state that talking on the phone was illegal without a hands free device, I’ve adopted that habit to.
Do you unplug? If so to what extreme, daily, weekly, part or totally unplugged? If not, maybe you should give it a try and for goodness sakes have a little courtesy towards others when using all those devices okay?
- Weekend Assignment: Writer Unplugged (barbaratyler.wordpress.com)
- I Unplugged and Lived Through It! (seaofestrogen.wordpress.com)