I know it’s hard, especially in today’s half open, half still shut world. Now more than ever it is important to unplug yourself! We spend so much time on technology, always “on” that it is so important to remove yourself from it every now and then. I’m not saying uninstall Facebook, Insta, Twitter, etc… I’m saying leave your phone behind once in a while, put it in another room, or turn it off.
In my role at Aerial Dance I do a lot of online work with our social media accounts. I also have my personal accounts that I use to keep in touch with friends and family. Between the two, I spend A LOT of time on social media platforms. Each week, I try to take one day that I don’t open my personal or work social medias. One day free from it all – it’s rare that I make it the whole day honestly, but I try. In doing this I have actively reduced the amount of my free time I spend on social media just mindlessly scrolling. I go on less as a “time filler” than I used to. Small changes like this have made a noticeable impact on my amount of free time to do other things.
For many of us, being plugged in in ways other than social media (emails, texts, messaging platforms) is necessary for our jobs. This can be just as draining on us! Make sure you set boundaries and keep your YOU time. Starting with simple boundaries like “After 7:30pm I will not check my work email” or “Before I’ve had my coffee, I will not open my computer” are small, easy ways to start to set boundaries for yourself. I still struggle with this one. I have set boundaries like these, but often find myself saying “It’s just one email to respond to” and making exceptions. It is a work in progress. I have the boundaries in my head though, and most of the time I do try to abide by them. This has caused me some anxiety in getting used to it, but that email will be there in the morning! If it were a true emergency, I know that a phone call would be made to alert me to it.
The moral here is that we all need to actively take time for ourselves WITHOUT being on call all the time. Just having our technology on us, knowing that it could go off triggers our brain to be slightly in response mode. Take some time to separate yourself from it all. Small doses even, can make a huge impact.