How Having A Digital Detox Changed Me

Here I am again.

Back to writing and sharing things with readers both old and new about the things that matter a great deal. It comes with a heavy heart that I must write the things I am about to but it is a part of my own ethos to remain open and honest over all elements of life.

You may or may not have been aware of my absence in recent weeks, though I took a step back away from the online world. It was due to a mixture of different situations and circumstances that lead up to taking this respite, but they all accumulated together to result in a relapse of my mental health. This is something that I really thought would not ever happen to me, as I was sure that I had made it far enough over the other side to never fall back into those terribly self-destructive behaviours and thought patterns. Yet that is exactly what has happened and I have been so devastated to admit it, not only to you but mainly to myself.

Having come to terms with this realisation that I have relapsed, I knew it was time to act against all of the (potential) consequences that could occur by doing what is best for my health and wellbeing. So on 30th July 2018, I switched off notifications and logged out of social media and would remain offline until I was truly ready to join in once more.

For as advanced as we have become, we are now further away from the fundamentals we all need to survive happily and harmoniously within ourselves and with each other. I have spoken before about the impact that the digital age (click for the link) is having on generations, though there is not a lot out there to prevent any further damage to our health and wellbeing.

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We protect ourselves with an exterior that appears more resilient to fear that we have on the inside. We go about our days acting as though we are in total control of ourselves in every way, though we are slowly being eaten away by doubt, worry, comparison, competition, and judgment we feel in and around us. Social media is such an easy way to cover up the truth for something is seen as more accepted, liked and admired by society.

Social media is such an easy way to cover up the truth for something is seen as more accepted, liked and admired by society. We post about the highlights of our lives in order to paint a lovely picture for the world to see that isn’t depicting the real truth behind the screen.

Being a blogger does influence the amount of focus and attention I give towards content that goes online, whether that be my own work or looking at what others are doing. The longer I spend online the greater the negative impact it has on my mind. There is no shying away from the number of pressures that are in the media as a whole, so it is no surprise that more people are suffering from low self-esteem due what is on social media and online content.

The Detox

Never would I have imagined myself using the word ‘detox’ in a blog post referring to my own actions, however, in this case, it is the most applicable word to use since being on social media can be so intoxicating for most people at some point or another.

Being away from Instagram, Twitter, and this blog was a really tough challenge mentally. Even after a few days of not using any of them, I was still programmed into thinking through ‘blog time’ which is the term I use for the particular hours of the day when posts are best to be sent out (There are certain times for everything generated when it comes to social media!). I felt an enormous level of guilt over not creating anything to share, and it was tearing me up inside at the thought of letting myself and others down. ‘The Growing Butterfly’ is something that I am so passionate about continuing to build on, but that should not come at such risk to my physical and mental health.

Although I still had (and still do have) those negative thoughts, I did start to have the biggest sense of relief from not blogging. I felt free more than I have done in a long time, which gave more focus to the here and now. I have been better able to concentrate on reading books, talking with loved ones, taking in my surroundings, fuelling my body well, and respecting myself enough to allow time to heal.

I began to feel proud for every hour then every day that went by without me going on social media. Soon I was going hours without even so much as picking up my phone unless absolutely necessary! The liberation I felt was indescribable, something that can only be understood by experiencing it first hand.

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A Lesson To Learn From

There are several things that I have taken away from what was quite a long period away from social media when it comes to being a blogger (even not being a professional). But the most important and valuable lesson I have learned is that there is a bigger purpose in my life than the words and images I share online.

Time is precious. It is not something that can be given back and however, it is spent will create an impact on your present and future self. By starting to delegate more time for things away from technology we are opening up all our senses to the experiences we are making. We are becoming more conscious, really engaging with what is going on in and around us. We are better able to connect, to bond, to love those we have in our lives which enriches the both our own lives as well as their own.

Being sheltered away on social media, spending time in a virtual existence is preventing souls from ever having true fulfillment.  As human beings we are meant to live fully; to embody life for all it has to offer for ourselves and not through the projection of another or a false representation of ourselves. We need to reconnect with the life we have

We need to reconnect with life.

Switch off your devices and take in what is happening right here right now.

It through truly living in the now is where you will find the strongest sources of happiness, love, and peace.

 

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2 thoughts on “How Having A Digital Detox Changed Me

  1. justnatonya says:

    Sarah this was beautifully written. I’m in the process of writing a blog post about my digital detox I did over the weekend a few weeks ago. After reading your post, I feel even more inspired for it’s release. Digital detoxes are so necessary this day and age. Everything is involved and surrounded by technology. Sometimes I like to just sit and do nothing and that means turning off EVERYTHING. I’m glad you learned something new for yourself too.

    Natonya | https://www.justnatonya.wordpress.com

    • The Growing Butterfly says:

      Thank you ever so much for saying that! You are so right, there is a great need for space and time away from social media and technology these days. The modern world has become so reliant on it that we are neglecting what really matters to us all.
      Please let me know how to get on sweetheart! xo

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