Quick tips for knowing when to switch off from technology

Technology has allowed us to be more connected and informed than ever before, so much so that over recent years technology has rapidly shifted from simply being thought of as a source of convenience to being considered a necessity. So, if you think you’re someone who likes to fill your time scrolling through newsfeeds on your computer or tends to feel nervous when your phone isn’t in reach, then here are three simple ways to help unplug and reap the benefits of being off the grid.

  1. Blanket Bedroom Ban.

Keeping our phone in easy reach while we sleep can not only wake us up at night, but it can stop us going to sleep. If you rely on your phone to wake you up in the morning, try finding a good old-fashioned alarm clock. Or you could activate the ‘Do Not Disturb Mode’ on your smartphone which silences notifications from anyone other than ‘Favourite’ contacts and can help curb temptation to check your phone.

2. Alternative entertainment.

To cut down on screen time try reaching for a book instead of your phone or the remote the next time you’re bored. Reading has a number of reported benefits on top of keeping us away from technology. It stimulates our minds, expands our vocabularies, sharpens our writing and analytical skills, reduces stress and improves our memory. Books aren’t the only way of keeping our minds active, we can also keep a diary, do a puzzle or socialise with our friends or children. The important thing to ask ourselves when reaching for our phones is if there’s anything more productive, we could be doing instead.

3. Don’t forget to communicate.

Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the ‘convenience’ of technology that we forget to properly communicate. For example, when someone sends you a message, why not reply to them with a phone call. If a colleague from your office emails you, why not speak to them face-to-face. If you’re having dinner with friends or family, ask everyone to put their phones away so you can give each other your undivided attention. We often find that proactively engaging in conversation with others can help us receive information faster, connect with people on a more personal level and improve our overall communication skills. It’s win win!

Source: This is an edited extract from Technology: Knowing when to switch off, available from AFA Care and Benestar, https://benestar.com/