Put Down That Phone: Unplug Now to Improve Your Focus
Blake Lovell | My Mind
You probably knew about the fifth annual National Day of Unplugging that took place a few weeks ago. Surely a tweet or Facebook post informed you of the news, right? After all, with instant access to even the tiniest bit of information always at our disposal, there’s a good chance you saw something about it. Then again, due to the flood of constant communication through apps and social media, you might have missed it. Unplugging from technology for a day is something everyone should entertain at some point, as the benefits far outweigh the need for constant contact with the outside world.
Focus, Focus, Focus
When you’re always bouncing from one thing to another, it’s impossible to achieve the focus you need for an important task. Continual use of technology only makes this worse. If you’re not reading an email, you’re looking at Facebook. If you’re not sending a Snapchat, you’re sending a tweet. If you’re not playing a game on your phone, you’re texting three people at the same time. How can you attain any kind of focus with so much going on?
A Battle With Technology
Technology has brought about innovations that without question enhance our life experience. However, gadgets have also overloaded us with a wealth of tools that allow us to constantly be in contact with someone other than ourselves. This is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, talking and interacting with others on a consistent basis gives us a great deal of happiness. But on the other hand, it can distract us from improving ourselves and focusing on the goals that are important to us.
Keep Things Simple
In order to regain our focus, sometimes we have no choice but to unplug. Whether it’s going cold turkey with a hardcore 24-hour sabbatical or simply cutting out one of the many apps on our phone, it’s necessary at times to resort to old school tactics to eliminate the clutter from our mind. Instead of playing Angry Birds, read a book. Instead of communicating with your friends through social media, meet up with them and go on a hike instead. Oh, and leave that phone in your car.
You Are Your Top Priority
We live in an age where we are getting advice from millions of sources. We can find anything we want about any subject in the world. While that can have its advantages, we end up neglecting ourselves when we become so addicted to information and interaction with others. We are so busy with others that we don’t set aside time to think about what matters most to us. No app or tweet is more important than maintaining a healthy mind.
You may find unplugging for an entire day impossible. After all, you have to be able to communicate at work, or with your kids, family members, etc. But, if you want to be able to focus and be more productive, start small and work from there. Take an hour off at lunchtime. Then try two hours after dinner. Once you start to see the real benefits, you can take a leap and try a whole afternoon.
Your muddled mind will thank you for it.