Tips for achieving a smartphone detox this summer (or at least for a few days)
It is said that mobile technology has become ubiquitous -- maybe even too ubiquitous than we care to admit. Indeed, as we approach a new decade, it has become increasingly more difficult to grab a respite from all those text messages, social media updates, emails, and app alerts, even for just one day. No wonder some of us are already getting worried about falling into mobile addiction.
But for those who are really willing, one can accomplish a smartphone detox. It is not going to be easy, so we are offering a few tips.
Make your intentions clear from the beginning
Escaping from mobile technology is made easier if we tell our family, friends, and even colleagues not to bombard us with calls and messages. Of course, one can always make an exception for emergencies, but if your World Cup loving best friend will be sure to text you about Cristiano Ronaldo’s latest goal in the coming days, a good decision is to tell that particular pal to maybe not bother this time.
Put yourself in situations where you don’t require an Internet connection
This is easier said than done. But certain scenarios and locations can help facilitate better smartphone detox. For instance, going to the beach is a good idea, but actually swimming in the ocean is a better one as opposed to just taking selfies against that glorious sky every chance you get.
For those vacationing, going to restaurants or business establishments without an Internet connection should also help. The trick here is to find a place that interests you, so that you will not get bored enough to start surfing the web.
Experiencing the outdoors is another great idea. For those who are not into walking trails, they can sample the local culture in their neighborhood, street, town, or city. Or they can ride the train or bus to the nearest park.
Banish your phone
Sometimes the most effective solutions are the simplest ones -- if you do not want your smartphone to bother you, you can just put it somewhere it can not bother you (e.g. six feet under, in the basement, in the fridge, in Alaska, etc). Even putting it where you can not see it or hear it is a step in the right direction. The key now is to sustain that distance however long you can.
Surround yourself with non-digital entertainment
Yes, they still exist. You can read a book or a magazine. You can play a board game with a real person, instead of playing a mobile game against a remote friend or AI. Try Cards Against Humanity.
Play a music instrument
You can’t get hooked to your mobile when your hands are busy playing the piano, the guitar, or the drums. Or as Lady Gaga once said, you can just dance.