Sepi's Digital Detox Diary
Curious to explore their relationships with technology, Kelsey, Sepi and Laurie each took one day off from all their devices. Read on for the results.
What did you learn about yourself and what did you learn about others from your day off the grid?
I did my digital detox on a Sunday and since I knew I’d be spending the day with my husband I asked him to join me. I definitely found that his participation made it easier for me to get through the day without my phone; we spent our Sunday doing things we’d normally do (enjoying coffee and breakfast together, reading, listening to music on our record player, going on a long walk or hike), just without the distraction of our devices. I initially had all of these grandiose ideas about how I should spend the day without my phone, as if doing so was such a momentous occasion that it demanded the need to try something new, but once i relieved myself of any and all pressures to spend my time “productively,” I was able to move through the day with a sense of ease. It sort of felt like a one day vacation, which makes me think that I associate my phone with obligations and responsibility.
What devices or contact did you miss?
I didn’t particularly “miss” anything but I did notice a lingering thought in the back of my mind throughout the day that an emergency might occur and I wouldn’t have my phone on hand to be available to my friends or family if they needed me.
What devices or contact did you definitely not miss?
I definitely did not miss the aimless scrolling I find myself absent-mindedly doing throughout the day. I often catch myself aimlessly scrolling (especially at night), and then fall into a shame spiral about how I’m spending my time and my perceived levels of “productivity.” I didn’t miss that feeling.
Now that you have had a day away from your devices, do you have judgements about where technology has had a positive impact on your life and where it has had a negative impact on your life?
Certainly, the most positive impact technology has had in my life is the ability to connect with friends and family with such ease. It’s really beautiful that I can frequently be in touch with my cousins in the UK and Iran because of apps like Telegram and WhatsApp and I’m really grateful that I'm easily able to do so.
I was able to get through my day without my devices, but I have to acknowledge that on a typical day, I compulsively check my phone which results in an unhealthy amount of time spent scrolling without purpose. It's something that I don’t feel particularly proud of and a bad habit that I’d like to curb going forward. I’d like to use my time in a more meaningful way or even use my phone in a more meaningful way; if I want to chat with a friend, maybe I will call or FaceTime rather than text. If I’m reaching for my device to scroll for inspiration, I’ll open one of my interior design books or magazines instead.
What was the first thing you did when you got your devices back?
Checked to see if my parents had tried to call or text me.
How do you think you'll change your relationship with technology after your detox?
I’d like to implement a weekly mini digital detox with my husband. We discussed selecting one night a week where we put our phones (which seem to be the most problematic/distracting devices in our lives) away by a certain hour and not using them again until the next day.