I am a workaholic. I will admit it. If I am not writing for one blog or another I am working on a shoot or on my novel. It has got to a point where I feel I am wasting time if I stop for a moment. But I also reached a point where every night I was going to bed early morning with burning eyes that stung when I tried to close them. My back was also suffering, despite already having a back injury I never sit particularly well while working, slumping over my laptop for hours at a time.
I estimated that I spend at least 85% of my day on a device, be it my computer, phone, ipod or tablet; this may even have risen higher since the release of Pokémon Go! as I started taking my phone with me to walk my dogs. (Only to end up hatching yet another Pidgey!)
Finally I decided enough was enough, it was time for a Digital Detox. As it happened my family was spending a week in the Welsh hills, so I tagged along, leaving behind all my technology besides my camera.
I spent the week catching up on my reading and spending some quality time with my family, walking the dogs for miles over the beautiful fields (without Pokémon Go!)
I hadn’t realised how distant I had become; the times I had been sat in the same room as my friends and family but on my phone instead of talking. To have that time with my family, chatting and laughing till we cried playing cards against humanity; it was really precious and gave me a huge wake up call. Work is all well and good but time with family is a brief moment in time that we should grasp with both hands.
I also found that I was going to bed a much heathier time and I was falling straight to sleep (which hasn’t happened in years). Phones and other devices give off a blue light that stimulates our brains, making them move active. So if your looking at your phone before you go to sleep, your brain will be more active, meaning sleep will be a harder task. By cutting out my phone usage I wasn’t exposing myself to the blue light, so no more burning eyes and restless nights! Cutting my device time late at night is definitely something I will be evaluating because after all, without enough sleep the brain cannot rest and we end up exhausting ourselves. Remember, sleep is very important.
Now that I am home again, I am straight back in my office writing up this post with Netflix in the back ground, but I feel well rested. With this new refreshed state I have decided to make some changes. For starters, all computers will be turned off by 10 and my phone will go away at half 10. I have also decided that one weekend a month I will put all of my tech away for 48 hours and just take some time for myself.
Making small changes to your life style could make a huge difference. Take time for yourself to relax and spend time with the ones closest to you. The work will be there tomorrow, but the ones you love may not.
How do you like to relax? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter! Just follow the bird.