Every year I have a digital free holiday. This time a few years ago I turned off my phone and travelled around Myanmar (Burma) for three weeks. There was no point in taking my phone with me as there was very little phone or wifi access. Scary, yet liberating at the same time.

Just a few weeks ago I went on a yoga retreat and decided to use the opportunity do a digital detox. Surprisingly, not only was I the only one who turned all of my devices off, I was the only one who thought to do it. Even the teacher openly used her phone.

Addicted to digital
Over 60% of people admit to being addicted to the internet and their devices. I really think it’s worth asking the question...would I find it difficult to not take my phone with me on holidays, to grab a coffee, to go for a walk, to go to bed, to...?

I check my email first thing and last thing in the day – as I do the Facebook, Twitter and Instagram twirl. Like most professionals, I spend up to 10 hours a day online.

Our constant need for new stimulation, endless access to information and social connection is changing our brains. It’s impacting our long-term memory as well as our wellbeing.

At times I wonder if our addiction to digital is making us to lead lives that are a centimetre deep, and a kilometre wide.

Do nothing. Be bored.
An amazing thing happens when you are not constantly digitally stimulated. Your mind quiets down. When was the last time you experienced that?

Be brave, and feel the sensation of being bored. Don’t pick up the phone. Just daydream instead. Even try meditation.

The internet is a significant part of my life. Without it I wouldn’t have a business. For me, it’s not going away, and I don’t want it to go away! But in addition to having a digital free holiday a year, I am working on creating digital free rituals at home. It’s a work in progress.

I hope you have a wonderful time over holidays (with or without digital). I’m off to Hawaii with friends, and trust me there will be digital – heaps of cocktail, sunset and selfie shots! See you in the New Year.

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Catriona Pollard
From Unknown To Expert
CP Communications

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