The Benefits of Unplugging
In our modern age of Smartphones, laptops, 24/7 internet access, and the constant stream of social media feeds, completely unplugging and taking a break from media and our devices may seem like a revolutionary idea. However, researchers have found that when we take a step away from our devices we experience not only a profound shift in perception, but also an improved capacity to learn, increased focus, and lowered stress and anxiety. On top of that, we can reap the significant health benefits of deeper sleep, weight loss, better blood sugar control, and reduced symptoms of multiple sclerosis. So if you feel as if you could use a reboot in your life, a media and device detox may be just what you need!
6 Reasons to Take a Break From Your Device
Less anxiety and depression. When we take a break from our devices, there is a good chance we will experience less anxiety, depression, and overall psychological distress. Not only will we limit our exposure to disturbing news stories, but we also won’t be tempted to endlessly scroll through our social media feeds, which, studies have shown, directly contributes to heightened anxiety and depression.
Improved focus, learning, and energy. Constantly multitasking while using a device, along with switching between screens rapidly, degrades our overall focus and actually makes us less efficient in the long-run. Our brains were not designed to multitask, so we lose our cognitive edge when we make it a habit. It also increases our level of the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline, which ultimately sap our energy and can make adrenal fatigue more likely. What’s more, this study found that simply having a Smartphone in the same room, even if the participants weren’t using it, dramatically decreased cognitive performance — including learning. By setting aside our devices for a day or several, it helps our brains to reset and recharge. It will also lower our stress hormones which in itself has many health benefits, including better function of respiratory, cardiovascular, digestive, and immune systems.
Deeper, more restful sleep. By stepping away from our devices for a period of time, we eliminate our exposure to blue light from screens. Don’t underestimate the impact this frequency of light has on our wellbeing. Since our brains register blue light the same as daylight, when we are exposed to it by our screentime, the production of melatonin is suppressed. This is bad news for our sleep-wake cycle as it will make it much more difficult to fall asleep and to have deep, rejuvenating rest. Poor sleep is associated with weight gain, lowered immunity, and mood disorders. When we reset our sleep cycle by avoiding our devices, it causes a cascade of beneficial mental and physical health improvements.
Reduced Exposure to EMFs
Another reason to detox from our devices is that we will reduce our exposure to dangerous EMFs from wi-fi, laptops, Smartphones, and tablets. As I wrote in Are You Experiencing Unexplained Health Issues? EMFs May Be to Blame:
A 2006 study in the journal Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine found a strong link between exposure to electromagnetic fields and poor health. When the fields were reduced, the team found:
The number of students needing inhalers for asthma was reduced in one school and student behavior associated with ADD/ADHD improved in another school. Blood sugar levels for some diabetics respond to the amount of dirty electricity in their environment. Type 1 diabetics require less insulin and Type 2 diabetics have lower blood sugar levels in an electromagnetically clean environment. Individuals diagnosed with multiple sclerosis have better balance and fewer tremors. Those requiring a cane walked unassisted within a few days to weeks after GS filters were installed in their home.
The researchers concluded that “several disorders, including asthma, ADD/ADHD, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, are increasing at an alarming rate, as is electromagnetic pollution in the form of dirty electricity, ground current, and radio frequency radiation from wireless devices. The connection between electromagnetic pollution and these disorders need to be investigated.”
EMFs have serious ramifications for our health. To learn how I protect myself and my family beyond unplugging, see here.
Medicinal Herbs for Cognitive Health
Herbal remedies are exceptionally helpful in supporting a device and media detox. By using specific medicinal herbs that encourage cognitive function, soothe frazzled nerves, promote the growth of new neurons and maintain the health of mature ones, we can boost our brain and nervous system function to complement a technology fast. My Brain Bundle includes several outstanding herbs in this regard, including: Cordyceps, Lion’s Mane, and Reishi Mushroom Dual-Extracted Tinctures, along with a powerful Lemon Balm Tincture.
Seizing the Moment
Whether you take a break from your device for a few hours, a few days, or longer during an international screen-free week, approach it as a time to reconnect with yourself, spend time with loved ones, enjoy nature, and simply slow down. Give it a try and see for yourself how it affects your physical, emotional, cognitive, and mental health. I think you will like what you discover!