digital detox helps mental health

How digital detox helps your mental health

The era of the digital world can take its toll on your mind. It feels like every minute of every day we are in some way consumed by technology. Some of which may be completely necessary, like checking emails, doing our internet banking or messaging a loved one. But some of it can simply become too much and overwhelm our minds. 

The negative impacts of overusing digital devices is becoming more prominent. It’s not to say that using digital technology is bad for us….. it’s using too much that can be bad for us. Much like any form of over-indulging in other areas of our life – too much eating, drinking, working and partying can take its toll on our health – this is no different. 

It’s all about balance.

History of digital overload

The information age came with a rapid shift from the industrial revolution to the age of technology. It came thick and fast in the early 2000’s with the introduction of the Apple ‘’I’’ brands …. I pod, I pad, I phone …… then other providers came out bigger and better to start a technology game none of us were emotionally equipped to play. Our younger generations know no differently and have been raised in an environment overwhelmingly surrounded by using digital devices and technology. 

Data, data, data everywhere! Research suggests that about half of consumers have increased their use of digital channels to engage with businesses and almost 90% expect to maintain or increase this level over the next 12 months. 

The social dilemma 

Then we have the accelerated growth of social media platforms. Instagram, Facebook, Tic Tok, Snapchat and excessive gaming. Looking at other people’s lives through a filter they portray can be potentially harmful if we don’t have the emotional intelligence to manage our reality and expectations. The constant pull toward scrolling through what can sometimes be mindless waves of information releases dopamine which allows us to feel satisfied – so we keep going back for more. It can be a vicious cycle. 

Social media addiction can lead to low self-esteem, increased isolation, anxiety, depression, decreased physical activity, poor work and study habits, not to mention FOMO (fear of missing out)! 

Negative impacts on the way we learn and think

Due to the massive overload of information, technology can impact our working memory and limit the amount of information we take in. This can then implicate our long term memory because the transfer of information is overloaded so our brains cannot concentrate efficiently to form rich connections. 

This can lead to digital fatigue because our minds don’t have the necessary capacity to consolidate these mass amounts of information. A form of disengagement can occur, which leave people feeling worn out, tired, irritable and cause headaches and tension. 

Learning to live with the benefits of technology will help us find balance and notice when we are suffering digital fatigue. This should encourage us to recognise when it’s time for a digital detox!

Time to live more and scroll less. 

Find out more about how to get through a digital detox and when you need to take time off technology.

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