Last November, I went on an overland camping trip in Southern Africa with the main purpose of visiting Namibia and Botswana, places I’d always been intrigued in. But what I got out of the trip was a lot more than just phenomenal sights, lifelong friends, and fantastic travel memories — I was also plunged deep in the African wilderness far from internet access, phone signal, and TV for a whole month.
The experience left me refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready to fight hard again. It was the break I needed to reflect and refuel — both for my personal and professional benefit. You know what they say about disconnecting to reconnect? It’s absolutely true, believe me.
That’s why I promised myself to a digital detox at least once a year, where I go somewhere quiet, wild, and remote and get reconnected with myself and my surroundings. This time round, I’ve ditched the digital world for a month to travel East Africa in search of old friends, new sights, travel dreams, and a break from technology. No iPhone, no laptop, no tablet – just me and a group of travelers in the wilderness.
Why A Tech Break Can Help You
If you’re shuddering at the thought of parting with your gadgets for even an hour, you’re likely not alone — it always takes me a while to adapt to the feeling of being cut off from the world but trust me, taking a break from technology can do wonders. Here’s why:
You’ll be engaging with the real world. The world is a three-dimensional medium: things are happening around you all the time and even though you might not believe it, the real world is still outside there and not within your electronic devices. Technology may have changed our lives tremendously – for the better – but it has also taken away personal elements that many of us miss these days.
You’ll build better bonds. No matter how much technology advances, digital interactions will never be the same as connecting in person. Facebook, texts and email are great for keeping in touch but they lack the human touch that can be only be built when speaking face-to-face.
You’ll get more done. Many of us spend the majority of our time online or in front of a screen. Consider all of the other things you could be doing with this time if you weren’t on your computer. Whether it’s pursuing a hobby or catching up with friends at a bar, reducing your time spent online can help you focus more on other things in life.
You’ll feel less stressed. Most people are hooked to their electronic devices due to work responsibilities. Give yourself time off your smartphones after office hours by drawing a clear line between work and leisure and you will be sure to lower your stress level.
You’ll prevent a mental disorder. In 2012, a Swedish study found that young people who used technology heavily had a pronounced risk for mental health problems like depression, stress, and sleep disorders. Other research also shows that instead of getting people together, social media makes us lonely, jaded, jealous, or otherwise mentally unhealthy.
Are you plugged to your electronic devices 24/7? Do you long for a digital detox too? Share your thoughts with us here.