Our awesome intern, Ghislaine Moolenar, volunteered to be a guinea pig and take up our free Digital Detox in a Week course. Here she shares her experience.
By Ghislaine Moolenar
Monday: The start of my Digital Detox. I must admit, I am scared. But this will be the start of the new Ghislaine! Not only am I now just doing it for myself, I’m also doing it for my long distance boyfriend, because as my reward for completing this, I get to see him.
Tuesday: I’ve turned off Facebook and Facebook messenger, Instagram, Snapchat and Whatsapp. To not have notifications popping up every second of the day felt amazing. Sometimes when I see the notification and I don't reply I feel bad, but because I wasn't seeing them, I almost had an ‘excuse’ that I didn't reply or look at it. It got a bit more difficult in the evening as this was the time I wanted to talk to people and look at notifications, but it did give me some time to myself. All in all, I would definitely do this again! I already feel less connected to my phone, and like I have no full-time commitment to it.
Wednesday was difficult. I’ve put my phone on airplane mode, and I do actually need Facebook and Twitter for my work but I will try it once I finish. I managed to have my phone on airplane mode for 2 hours, it felt nice not having anyone distract me, but I did go off airplane mode a few times as it was difficult to not talk to my boyfriend for that long *blushes*.
Thursday was probably the most difficult. I managed to put all my social media apps into a folder and turned off the notifications, but I definitely still went on them. It might have worked for a few hours, I also had an interview so that helped, but all this afternoon and evening I've been on it non-stop. I do feel disappointed with myself, but to go from going on it every day to nothing all day was a very big step.
Friday was difficult, however I managed to stay off my phone for two hours during dinner, being busy helped stay off it, but once I finished dinner it was more difficult to stay off my phone because people kept trying to contact. It felt like I was free from everyone for a bit, and I wasn't on call all the time and answer everyones needs straight away. I noticed that I had to put my phone away, turned over and on silent to not feel the need to look at it.
Sunday: I’ve noticed that being busy and not being able to connect to people straight away definitely helps with the digital detox, but once I was alone and easily reachable it was a lot more difficult, it’s a habit I definitely need to kick! I realised throughout this course that I can do it if I put my mind to it, but it is very difficult and I do need the encouragement, which this course has given me! It's been a real eye-opener. I now tend to leave my phone in one place for a while because I then don't have the tendency to look at it, rather than being next to me where I do. This course made me realize that there is so much more to being online, and being with my family and actually being there focused is a wonderful feeling.
PS sign up for our Digital Detox in a Week course - it starts every Monday, and is completely free!
Dr Anastasia Dedyukhina is a keynote speaker, author of Homo Distractus, professional coach and a pioneer of the Consciously Digital™ concept.