For some this may seem like a bold statement, technology brings us so much and makes our lives so much easier in so many ways. Technology means we have more information than we could ever hope to absorb at our finger tips, that we can work from anywhere and we are always contactable from a phone call, text message or email to social media; on the flip side, it also means that we have more information than we could ever hope to absorb at our finger tips, that we can work from anywhere and we are always contactable from a phone call, text message or email to social media.
A recurring theme with my clients and something I notice sometimes myself, is that the blessings technology bring us, are also the things which are stopping us from being able to fully detach and switch off. When you are a business owner or in a stressful and demanding job, each time the phone rings or the laptop pings, we cannot resist checking to see what it is. I am sure we can all remember a time when we have decided that it is time to have a break, to take some all-important time out, in an attempt to achieve that all important work life balance, or as I like to call it LIFE work balance; only to be disturbed by a ‘ping’ and straight away we are alert, ‘oh, I will just have a quick look’ I won’t respond right now… then we have look and ‘oh, it is only something quick, I will just deal with that’… then an hour or so later, that all important you time, has disappeared. Sound familiar?
In fact it affects us all, all of the time; we cannot resist checking for updates on social media, sharing with others, responding to messages and reaching out through the medium of technology. This means that even when we think we are relaxing, if we are receiving messages and notifications and checking and responding to them, we are not truly relaxing. We may like to convince ourselves that we are multi-tasking, however, next time you do this, take a moment to recognise how you are feeling and how effective are at either task? We may think we are doing really well, at both relaxing and engaging with our ever expanding online community, but are we really?
From my experience I would suggest the answer is no, I have been trying something out and I find it really works. Scary as it may seem to some, I regularly take a step back in time, I leave my mobile phone in another room and on silent and I really relax, even if this is only for an hour or so I can really tell the difference, my whole body and mind relax. If I go for a walk down the beach, or for a swim, or even just popping to the shops, I often choose to leave technology behind. It may seem counter intuitive in our modern world, however I find the benefit to my wellbeing is considerable and this could be the same for you, so remember even for short periods of time, totally unplugging from technology could be the greatest gift you could give yourself in the search for that all important LIFE work balance.
I am going to challenge you now, to really try this out and commit to one hour a day removing technology from your life, are you up for the challenge? I would love to hear how you get on and how different you feel having taken the plunge and unplugged, just drop me an email. I can hear some of you now saying I can’t do that, what if I miss an important call, or email and lose business? I would like to counter that, by proposing that the benefits to you, your business or job, your family and social life and your overall wellbeing will be great and mean you are more productive, happier, focused and motivated and wished you had started this sooner. I do it all of the time and I nothing bad has happened yet, one thing I really notice and so do my clients, is that the more time we spend investing in looking after and nurturing ourselves the greater the rewards in all areas of our lives.
Until next time, keep smiling.