B054: How to have a mini digital detox

By March 22, 2019The Simplifiers Podcast

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In our device-driven culture, screen time and scrolling social media can (totally) take over our waking lives. If you’re feeling a bit maxed out, it might be time for a mini digital detox to get back on track. Here’s how.

Earlier this week, I spoke to Arlene Pellicane, the co-author of the book, Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World.

Arlene simplified how to manage screen time with your kids, and this conversation got me thinking…

Maybe it’s time for me to re-evaluate how much time I’m spending on my phone, laptop and TV as well.

Maybe it’s time (once again) to simplify.

So, if you’re up for the challenge, I’d love for you to have a mini digital detox alongside me this weekend. Just two days, 48 hours of unplugging from your devices and reconnecting with yourself.

You in?


How to take the weekend off from your phone

Create your boundaries

Remember, you set the rules for this experiment. Use this list to help you make the important decisions:

  • Are you shutting off your cell the entire time, or simply putting it up on the highest shelf you can find (rather than having it in your pocket at all times)?
  • Are you leaving your laptop safely locked away in your office, instead of bringing it home?
  • Are you saying no to TV, or just limiting yourself to one hour of screen time?

Bottom line, do what feels right for you… you get to decide.

For me personally, I find an all or nothing approach is the best way to tackle it. No phone, no laptop, no TV, no documenting my life on InstaStories, no screens whatsoever. That way, there’s no other rules to remember besides, ‘nope, nope, nope… no screens whatsoever for 48 hours.’

Identify your rewards

If the idea of being 100% screen-free gives you the ‘Heck NO!’ willies, trust me girl, I hear ya. It does for me, too. However, here’s how you can squash that fear…

Create a list of rewards that you will give yourself instead of being on your phone and doing the ‘mindless death scroll.’

This will be an exhaustive list of experiences, both big and small. Make a list of things that you find fun and pleasurable, which you can sprinkle throughout the weekend. Here are a few ideas…

  • Go for a walk in nature
  • Read a book
  • Drink a cup of tea
  • Meditate
  • Paint
  • Bake some bread
  • Take an afternoon nap
  • Kick a ball
  • Have a spa night with dollar store items
  • Go to an art museum
  • Sit in a hot tub
  • Go on a day trip somewhere you’ve wanted to go to for a while
  • Get out in the garden
  • Spend time with your favorite person in real life…

The list goes on and on.

Set a 7-minute timer and make a list of at least 30 things you could do that would be fun, inexpensive and bring you joy this weekend…

And then, check them one-by-one off the list once you do them.

One quick Captain Obvious side note: resist the urge to document this process by taking selfies all along the way. No need to do that, just this weekend. Deal?

Tell your peeps

In a device driven culture, it seems silly to have to do this, but you need to inform your family and your inner circle of people what you’re doing, before you do it.

Tell your parents so they don’t worry if they can’t get ahold of you.

Tell your partner and kids that you are trying this experiment for 48 hours. They can join in, if they wish, but either way, this is a gift you’re giving yourself, and you need their support and encouragement to help make it happen.

If anyone gives you a hard time, simply smile, say ‘Thank you for your feedback’ and don’t let it sway you one single bit.

Just #Dothething.

And just one final whisper, just from me to you, dear friend… come in closer.

If you’ve been feeling crispy around the edges these days, this may be exactly what you need.

This 48-hour experiment is all about slowing your pace way, way down. Remember what life was like when you were a kid, and you got outside instead of using your phone for entertainment.

It’s about letting your brain hit the reset button. Re-examine the relationship you have with your screens, and ask yourself… is it healthy, or not?

But remember, this experiment is not about perfection. Do your best, and give yourself grace. When you start to feel bored, annoyed or anxious that your phone isn’t within arms reach, take a deep breath, and take the time to journal out your feelings…

  • What’s coming up in this moment?
  • What am I learning along the way?
  • What am I going to do differently, come Monday?

You can do this, I believe in you.

It’s time to SIMPLIFY.

If this thought of the day inspired you…

Snap a photo of you doing the thing and send it to me via Instagram, privately or publicly… Just tag @thesimplifiers –  I’ll be your virtual accountability buddy in your quest to simplify your life.

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Thank you!

Big thanks to our undercover superheroes at The Simplifiers Podcast that help us create these episodes for you – Suzen Marie, our Podcast Editor. Jeffrey Lynn, our Video Editor. Janine Yardley, our Show Notes Editor. Lyden Yardley, our Director of Brilliance. Manminder Athwal, our Blogger. Our advisory board includes: Aubri Nowowiejski, Chris Justice and George Mills. And I’m your host, Mary Baird-Wilcock. Thank you so much for listening and telling your peeps about us.

As always friends, keep things simple.

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