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Unplugging — The New Freedom

Aug. 4, 2016 Huffington Post

Are you scrolling on Instagram at night as you fall asleep?

Grabbing your phone as soon as you wake up in the morning?

Checking your phone even though there was no sign of new messages coming in?

Are you feeling over-connected?

There’s a good chance that the answer is yes.

There’s no arguing that technology is a wonderful tool and can make magic happen by being connected with people around the world for all kinds of reasons and help us in our every day life, work or travels. It creates freedom but lines get blurry sometimes and we become so attached that we lose somehow bits of that freedom.

Being connected all the time is bad for our productivity, relationships, brain and our connection to others. It is linked to anxiety, depression, stress and fatigue, and impact us physically too as we are usually not moving our bodies while being online. 46 times a day – that’s the average number of times a person check his/her phone. We’re living on autopilot most of the time and we’re not even conscious of our habits.

I spent a week in the mountains recently and the benefits of being in nature, connected to the sun and trees have been plenty. Between social media notifications, scrolling down feeds and other distractions, it can be easy to get lost in the online world and feel like your head is spinning. The result for me was low productivity, feeling drained, short attention span and uninspired. So I headed to the mountains for a mini digital detox. Fresh air, nature, magnificent views, silence, no wifi, just books. Connecting to my body, replenishing my soul. Since I’ve been back, I’ve been inspired, creative and more productive. My energy and vibe have been high.

Unplugging from the online world to spend more time in the real world is essential for our wellbeing. Even though we can’t always escape to the mountains or ocean whenever we want, we have the choice to switch off and go for long walks, to put the phone on airplane mode when we want to focus on a project, to do a few sun salutations or stretches when feeling stuck with work instead of reaching for the phone.

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