You’ve got 15 minutes between meetings and supplier deliveries to take a second to yourself for a digital detox. Just 15 minutes to catch your breath and recharge to meet the demands of the day. You sit in your chair, staring off into space. For five minutes you work to clear your mind. Erase the demands of the digital and physical world for just a moment, and then … DING!
The sound of a incoming text message foils your carefully laid plans to detach for just a few minutes. In that moment, your adrenaline starts to pump and the stresses of the day quickly fill the space you created.
By now, we’ve learned enough about relaxation and digital detox to know that it makes us more creative, more relaxed, and better able to tackle the tasks of the day. What’s difficult is finding uninterrupted time in our schedules to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of the digital world — even for a short period of time.
5 steps for a digital detox
Here are five essential steps to make space in your life for a short digital detox throughout the day:
Schedule uninterrupted time.
Create uninterrupted space.
Escape from triggers.
Invest in assistive technology.
Set an alarm.
Follow these steps to decrease stress and increase productivity by unplugging on a regular basis.
1. Schedule uninterrupted time
Schedule your time off. It’s not only a great way to trick yourself into taking a few minutes away from the pressures of digital life, it’s also a great way to notify others that you’re unavailable. Book 15 to 30 minutes with yourself. Make the appointment recurring.
Editor’s note: Scheduling you-time is easy with GoDaddy GoCentral’s Online Appointment Scheduling feature. Block your calendar for as much time as you need to recharge between appointments.
2. Create uninterrupted space
If you work in an office, find an area that’s not often used. If your office has bookable rooms, don’t forget to book or reserve the room. Are you a freelancer or a small business owner? Head to a nearby park bench. Bring a pair of noise-canceling headphones and sunglasses to get a bit more separation from the outside world.
3. Escape from triggers
If you remember that lesson in high school about Pavlov’s dog, you can probably guess what triggers are. They’re things that are designed to remind or prompt you to take a particular action. Rings, text-message dings, meeting reminders — even vibrations — are triggers. Take off your smart watch and turn your phone to “do not disturb.”
4. Invest in assistive technology
Use an app like Headspace or Calm for guided meditation. Paid versions of Pandora or Spotify work great for relaxing music (free versions have ads, which can be distracting). Your own music on Google Music or iTunes works well, too. Also consider spending time without sound.
5. Set an alarm
Without setting an alarm, the propensity is often to check a watch, phone or other timekeeping device to figure out whether time is up. Instead, set an alarm so you don’t have to keep looking back at technology.
Most importantly, remember to make space and time for yourself. Your business, clients, co-workers, family, and friends all depend on you being as awesome as they know you are. Taking a digital detox will help you reset and rejuvenate to tackle the day like the rockstar you are.