With the influx of gadgets, the convergence of technologies and overload of information many of us are experiencing information deluge. Inability to prioritize tasks, lack of attention at work and reduced level of energy are some of the signs of our obsessive digital consumption which need our attention. This article gives an idea of the digital content consumption pattern and highlights why it is important to exercise some restraint. It also suggests ways to effective digital detox in city life.
Being an early consumer of the emerging technologies, I was exposed to digital routine and its ill-effects much earlier. Experiencing lack of quality sleep, distraction, and energy drain during the day, I realized I needed to take corrective measures. I also realized doing away with the use of IT is not feasible, so the best thing was to look for a planned timeout. It started with disconnecting the internet for a short period, and then I expanded it to accommodate it as part of my lifestyle. I could also feel the change, from increased attention at work, productivity to better sleep, and more energetic start to the next day. After witnessing the change, I thought of sharing this routine with friends, and later on, I felt it is worth sharing with the community.
Before we talk about impact and tips to address, let us understand the term Digital Detox. It means a process to restrict and manage the ill-effects of our digital exposure.
The present and past pattern of digital content consumption will help us understand why we should think about digital detox:
Every 60 minutes 300 hours of HD videos are uploaded Youtube*
One billion hours’ worth of video watched daily*
19 hours per user spent on Youtube*
Traffic from video content to contribute to 82% of global internet traffic by 2021*
Half of prime Youtube audience discontinue what they’re doing to watch their favourite video*
From consuming 3 hours in 2008, the consumption doubled to 6 hours by 2013, and*
In 2018 it is 19 hours of video consumption on Youtube*
How is it impacting us?
In so many ways and very little about it is being documented. Attention, Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is on the rise among people exposed to digital life. In a research conducted on more than 2500 students, it was found that the digital influence leads to some problems including attention deficit, hyperactivity, impulsive behaviour, etc. The smartphone is said to have brought a series of diseases, phantom vibration syndrome, text-neck syndrome to name a few which are on the rise. The latest addition of smart home gadgets may add up. Late night use of screen severely affects the secretion of melatonin hormone leads to troubled sleeping, morning depression and feeling of sleepiness and tiredness during the day.
What is the remedy?
As a responsible person with a constructive outlook on life challenges, let us also talk about the remedies. We are sharing some of the ideas that may help in digital detox:
Make a plan
The first thing to make a plan is to see our digital consumption pattern. Talk with friends, family and colleagues. Block out a time slot for detox and also, accommodate the stretches in some cases. For example, if we plan to restrict receiving/making calls to 10 pm, then respect it. Depending on our profession and daily routine we may take a planned timeout during the day.
Find a detox buddy
When we implement such exercise with someone who can motivate and mirror our efforts, it makes us more committed to the goal. Encourage someone to volunteer or join you in your detox endeavour. Celebrate your detox success with them.
Revisit 24x7 Connectivity
Disconnect internet, disable notifications on chat apps, Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram and other social networking apps which keep flashing promotional notifications every now and then.
Check your Gadgets buying habits
The pace of introducing new technology is getting shorter by day, and we cannot aspire to buy the latest and live happily. Just because a company introduced a 6 Gigabits of RAM, and graphics processor in its mobile doesn’t mean that we must buy it if we are not into professional graphic designing using a smartphone.
Give them some rest!
If you are not in a hurry, think of completing a few tasks manually whether it is using a paper organizer or using the wristwatch for timekeeping.
Invest in meeting friends and family routinely
The more we are living in a connected world, the more important it is becoming to spend time offline. A brimming smile, a gentle tap on the shoulder and a warm hug can never be substituted. Spend time to create fun moments, discover ways to unwind, relax and detox.
The Contrary POV!
On the flipside, the increasing consumption will pave the way for digital-detox counsellors offering training on restricting digital consumption, creative engagement, etc. If you do not wish to promote them, act now!
Do share with us what steps are you are taking proactively towards the same in the comment section below.
Disclaimer: The health journeys, blogs, videos and all other content on Wellcure is for educational purposes only and is not to be considered a ‘medical advice’ ‘prescription’ or a ‘cure’ for diseases. Any specific changes by users, in medication, food & lifestyle, must be done under the guidance of licensed health practitioners. The views expressed by the users are their personal views and Wellcure claims no responsibility for them.