Raise your hand if you feel uncomfortable when you can’t check your phone every five minutes? How about if you have to turn it off? If you go a day without checking Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/whatever social media site?
Don’t worry if you raised your hand and kept it up there, you’re in good company. Most of us have a hard time getting away from our TV, phone, or computer screens for longer than a few minutes. I’m just as guilty as the rest of you. As a blogger, I spend an inordinate amount of time writing and researching posts, putting things up on all of my social media accounts and browsing the enormous amount of cat pictures online. Ok, that last one really doesn’t have anything to do with blogging but you get the idea.
As a culture, we are enamored with the instant gratuity that social media provides us. It feels good to post a picture on Instagram and have 20 likes in the first 5 minutes. I love hearing my phone ping with a notification that someone favorited my last tweet. It makes me feel important worthy, like I’m doing my job as a health blogger right.
While that’s somewhat true, if no one liked or read my stuff I would be pretty ineffective, it’s also a little counterintuitive. Being healthy doesn’t mean spending all my time trapped behind a screen and in the online world. We need to get away from the glow of our phones and laptops and televisions and out into the world of people and natural light.
I recently noticed that some of my best work for my blog came when I was actually away from it. Every day I try to take an afternoon walk. It helps break up my day of sitting and gives me a chance to not be working. While out on these walks I don’t have my phone to tell me there is a new notification on Facebook or my laptop refreshing with new emails.
It’s just me and the great outdoors.
It clears my head and I can actually come up with some awesome ideas for the blog. Sometimes I compose whole posts while out on my morning run or solve a problem that I have been struggling with for the past few hours while I’m strolling by the lake.
Technology is great, don’t get me wrong. I love being able to reach a big audience and have my words and thoughts make an impact all while I’m sitting in my pajamas. But don’t forget there is so much more out there than getting more followers or retweets. Try unplugging yourself for just a few minutes each day. Just 20 minutes where you don’t look at any technology.
Take a walk
Read a book
Get coffee with a friend
And don’t post one picture of you doing it on Instagram. You’ll be more productive for taking a short media break and the internet and slew of cat memes will be waiting for you when you get back.
There is a whole world waiting for you to find it, all you have to do is put down the phone and look around.