Aamir Khan Goes On Digital Detox; What’s Stopping You?

Mr. Perfectionist Aamir Khan has gone to the pre-mobile days by weaning himself off from his handset till he completes shooting for his upcoming film Laal Singh Chaddha. He took the decision because he felt addiction to his cellphone was spoiling his concentration level besides affecting his personal and professional life. He will only be reachable through his manager.

While many of us may not have managers to take our calls, we can certainly improve the quality of life by relying on the good old landline. If Aamir Khan can do it, why can’t we?

Unfortunately, the pandemic-driven work from home concept has thrown us into a ‘prison within a prison’ kind of situation, wherein we are imprisoned inside our homes and further imprisoned by technology, increasing our challenge of wriggling out of the situation. But try we must.

What is digital detox?

Digital detox refers to a period of time during which a person refrains from using electronic devices connected to the Internet, such as smartphones and computers. Moreover, a digital detox is an opportunity to reduce stress and focus more on interaction with others. And it can also help prevent addiction to tech devices.

In addition, a digital detox provides time to experience nature, get physical exercise, and practice mindfulness. Unplugging on a regular basis helps us maintain a healthy balance between IRL (in real life”=) activities and the digital world.

Ultimately, a digital detox is a way to disconnect to reconnect.

Why must we do a digital detox?

The benefits of modern technology notwithstanding, an increasing body of research is examining how online activity and digital media consumption affect both mental and physical health. Scientists have discovered some very real dangers associated with ongoing, excessive technology use. Addiction to smartphones leads to depression, anxiety, insomnia, and impulsive behaviour, comparisons on social media lead to low self-esteem. Moreover, gaming has now been recognised as an addiction. depression, anxiety, insomnia, and impulsive behaviour. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that teens who used digital media frequently were more than twice as likely to develop symptoms of ADHD.

By now, we know too well that digital addiction takes a toll on our physical health, limiting outdoor activities and affecting relationships.

How to do it?

“Turn off notifications. Checking continuously will reduce your curiosity to check social media constantly. Also, switch off your phone at night if possible. Allot a specific time to clients for messages and mails, and inform others accordingly,” Ranjana Roy, Counselling Psychologist, told IndiaToday.in., adding that, you must celebrate and reward yourself after you successfully complete a detox process.

A digital detox will allow your eyes, fingers, and brain to rest. Instead of watching videos and indulging in Twitter debates, spend quality time with family and friends. “Focus on self. Relax. Meditate because it is required for the well-being of the mind and body. Connect with self and the environment,” Ranjana Roy added.

It has to be a deliberate and concerted effort, where each family member can keep a check on one another. You could also make it a family activity by giving each other rewards for achieving targets and also plan fun activities together.

Is it easier said than done?

Of course.

“We are living in the digital era. So, absolutely putting away the devices out of sight is perhaps not possible for those who are in certain professions. But certainly not for those who spend a lot of time on social media. Setting limits for using devices and rationally using them can be important ways to detox,” Dr Sutapa GuhaRay Datta, a psychologist from Kolkata told IndiaToday.in., adding, “Detoxification of addiction to digital devices, in the present situation, is difficult if not impossible. But we cannot deny the fact that it is extremely important, keeping in mind the adverse effects of digital addiction – physical, social and psychological.”

Strike a balance

Like it was mentioned at the beginning, all of us don’t have managers to take our calls, so it is not easy for us to put away our smartphones completely but baby steps can certainly be taken in that direction.

A beginning can be made by doing digital detoxification on weekends. During the week too, identify the hours that you need the phone the most and the least and prioritise accordingly. You could also designate it activity-wise e.g. not answering the phone when playing a game of tennis or carrom with your children.

“If chances of opting for a digital detox appear slim in your case, you can most definitely balance it by just doing it for one day,” mental health professional Mansi Sanghvi Bhayani told IndiaToday.in.

“Detox refers to rejuvenation and getting all the impurities out, and helping your body deal with all the symptoms that anything has caused. Whenever we do excess of something in the wake of several circumstances in our daily life, it causes a burnout. That burnout leads to a feeling of either running away from a situation or going for a detox,” she added.

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