Here it is, the ultimate test: pick up your cell phone. Stare longingly at it for a few minutes, make sure you have no pending text messages, give your email one last glance over, check your texts one more time (and maybe your email too), and then…..are you ready for it?….shut it off. Yes, you heard right. Shut. It. Off.
For most people this would send the body and mind into a flurry of panic. The heart starts to beat a little faster, the mind starts racing: “But what if I miss this call?” or “What happens if so-and-so tries to text me?” or “I have to have it on incase my mom/sister/boyfriend/bestie/cat/dog/iguana needs me!” Most of you probably wouldn’t make it an hour without this (rather false) connection to the outside world. Most of us wouldn’t either! But believe it or not though, powering down your iPhone every now and then for a minimum of 24-hours (if not more) is actually good for you. Wanna know why? Read on…
It teaches balance and reduces stress
Since the introduction of cell phones the lines between our professional and our personal lives have become dramatically blurred. Thanks to text message and data plans our access to our work lifes often carries over into our home lives now and this can cause a serious strain on relationships, marriages, and families. Your home should be your getaway from the stresses of your workday and the people who surround you at home should be the ones who help calm and restore your happiness after a long day at the office. Even if you can only manage to do it 2-3 days a week, turn off the phone as soon as you leave the office. Your body, mind, and relationships will thank you for it.
It reinforces “real” communication
Every tried to hold a conversation with someone who was deeply enthralled in an email, text message, or facebook page on their smart phone screen? Their responses often sounds something like “uh huh”, “yup”, “sure thing”, but not much else. It’s incredibly annoying (not to mention rude!), right? And we’ve all been guilty of doing it at one time or another. Once or twice a week get together with your partner or your girlfriends on a “no-phones” date, where you all agree to leave your phones turned off for the entirety of the gathering. You’d be surprised how much you actually have to say to one another and how amazing it feels to truly communicate with real people again (and to REALLY “lol”)
It will help you get a better nights sleep
New research has shown that most of us aren’t getting enough sleep (well duh) and that one of the primary causes of that is actually our cell phones. Surfing the internet or responding to emails while in bed as well as middle of the night text messages and phone calls, all contribute to less sleep and a less peaceful nights rest by encouraging stress and keeping the body on alarm at all times. Get yourself a good reliable alarm clock (your cell’s alarm should NOT be your alarm!) and always switch off the phone before bed. Nothing is important enough to ruin your chances at a good (and deserved!) night’s sleep.