Expert Advice

Sue Harmsworth’s Digital Switch Off

Lifestyles are continuing to change at a dramatic rate— they’re becoming more fast-paced, demanding and technologically driven. With the impact of this on health and wellbeing just as dramatic – we simply never switch off.

With blue light (the light emitted from your phones, tablets, computers and TVs) and technology having a negative impact on our health, it’s never been more important for us to slow down and take a breath.

The reason this is so important is because these factors disturb or disrupt our sleep. And over a sustained period of time, sleep disruption can have a damaging effect on the body and its ability to heal itself.

However, technology overall is taking us away from mindfulness and our abilities to focus and perform better, and instead bringing us closer to anxiety, nervousness and unrest.

Therefore a ‘digital detox’ will help you recognise the need for stress and anxiety relief, to aid both your mental and physical wellbeing.

For me, my home is my sanctuary and I try, where possible, to devote some time to myself with no outside distractions or technology. To do this yourself, turn off all electronic devices at night – even Wi-Fi too, as this will stop electromagnetic fields affecting your environment.

Take all devices out of your bedroom including phones, laptops, tablets and your TV if you have one in there. Even your digital alarm clock – as this too produces sleep-disturbing light.

Stop using your devices two hours or so before bed. So that’s no emails, scary films or anything that will stimulate your brain. Turn it all off and start thinking about getting ready for bed instead.

To feel calm and wind down for sleep, take a hot, soothing bath, read a book or sit somewhere quiet and perfect your breath work. Whatever you do, make sure it’s something that works just for you.

Lastly, consider evaluating your bedroom to ensure there isn’t a glimmer of light (artificial or otherwise) creeping into the room. Invest in blackout curtains and listen to where noise is coming from. If needs be invest in some ear plugs and an eye mask – and enjoy being free from your devices.

Take all devices out of your bedroom including phones, laptops, tablets and your TV if you have one in there. Even your digital alarm clock – as this too produces sleep-disturbing light.

For me, my home is my sanctuary and I try, where possible, to devote some time to myself with no outside distractions or technology. To do this yourself, turn off all electronic devices at night – even Wi-Fi too, as this will stop electromagnetic fields affecting your environment.

Take all devices out of your bedroom including phones, laptops, tablets and your TV if you have one in there. Even your digital alarm clock – as this too produces sleep-disturbing light.

Stop using your devices two hours or so before bed. So that’s no emails, scary films or anything that will stimulate your brain. Turn it all off and start thinking about getting ready for bed instead.

To feel calm and wind down for sleep, take a hot, soothing bath, read a book or sit somewhere quiet and perfect your breath work. Whatever you do, make sure it’s something that works just for you.

Lastly, consider evaluating your bedroom to ensure there isn’t a glimmer of light (artificial or otherwise) creeping into the room. Invest in blackout curtains and listen to where noise is coming from. If needs be invest in some ear plugs and an eye mask – and enjoy being free from your devices.

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