5 Ways to Disconnect During Non-Work Hours
By Adetoun Adeyemo. Febuary 171th, 2020. 12:30pm
Balance isn’t really a new idea, but we all need to be reminded once in a while of what we already know to be true. Create some boundaries with that phone in your hand and find the mental break you need. Here are four simple ideas for disconnecting during your non-work hours:
1. Take a break from social media on the weekends
Sometimes, what you don’t know won’t kill you. This isn’t an excuse to stick your head in the sand, but a reminder that everyone, and I mean everyone (yes, you!) needs to look up and step away from the constant stream of information. You can’t solve all the problems of the world on an empty (or cynical) tank. Take a weekend off, laugh with friends, get outside, and notice all of the beauty around you!
2. Utilize the iPhone “Time Limits” feature
Perhaps Apple is on to the need for balance too. You’d be amazed to know how much time you spend on your phone. (It’s one of those real eye openers!) Set time limits to the apps on your phone that take too much attention or the ones with which you struggle to control yourself. An hour to peruse Instagram or the news app may be all the time you really need, preserving the rest of your evening or weekend to enjoy real life!
3. Get an alarm clock
Starting the day on your phone is asking to start the day in stress. Why pile on the worry or FOMO before you’ve even had your morning coffee or brushed your teeth? Charge your phone or turn it off in another room at night and wake up instead to an alarm clock. Create a morning routine you look forward to, and don’t turn your phone on until it’s done! Perhaps without the distraction, you’ll finally have time for some yoga, journaling or *gasp* breakfast.
4. Take a walk without your phone
Isn’t it funny to think “taking a walk” is something we need reminding of? This is not rocket science people. Go on a walk. Whether it’s in a familiar place, a public park or around your neighborhood, all that matters is that you leave your phone at home. Moving your body, getting some fresh air, observing things around you and processing your feelings will remind you that no matter what happened that day, the world still spins on an axis and life goes on. While you walk, take note of what you’re grateful for, and smile at those you walk past. It’s all going to be okay, and your phone will rarely, if ever, remind you of that fact.
In the hurry of life, the responsibilities of our jobs, and the pressure to remain ahead, what we don’t need is more information. What we need is a break for our eyes, our minds and our hearts: to remind ourselves that outside of the great big world at our fingertips is the one life we’ve been given.
5. Meditation goes a long way
When we meditate, we inject far-reaching and long-lasting benefits into our lives: We lower our stress levels, we get to know our pain, we connect better, we improve our focus, and we’re kinder to ourselves.
The first thing to clarify: What we’re doing here is aiming for mindfulness, not some process that magically wipes your mind clear of the countless and endless thoughts that erupt and ping constantly in our brains. We’re just practicing bringing our attention to our breath, and then back to the breath when we notice our attention has wandered.
- Get comfortable and prepare to sit still for a few minutes. After you stop reading this, you’re going to simply focus on your own natural inhaling and exhaling of breath.
- Focus on your breath. Where do you feel your breath most? In your belly? In your nose? Try to keep your attention on your inhale and exhale.
- Follow your breath for two minutes. Take a deep inhale, expanding your belly, and then exhale slowly, elongating the out-breath as your belly contracts.
My favorite song:
Alexis Jordan – Happiness
How do you disconnect when you are off the clock? Have you noticed a difference when you are completely off the grid?