The Benefits of Unplugging and How to Unplug

Most of us can’t live without our wonderful gadgets. When most people leave their homes, they have their mobile phones in one hand and an iPad in the other. Conversations at dinner tables have become one-sided because people lack the tools to unplug.

“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.” —Anne Lamott

Why is it that this generation fails to unplug?

Studies show that:

  • More than 84% of cell phone users admit they could not go a single day without their devices. (source)
  • 67% of cell phone users check their devices for alerts even if their phone is not ringing or vibrating (source)
  • Some even check their devices every 6.5 minutes. (source)

It’s evident that excessive technological use has become an ‘epidemic’. Some researchers have begun labelling it as the new yawn because of its contagious nature. But we don’t need statistics to tell us that our generation is overly connected. We experience this in our daily lives and sometimes we too get sucked into checking our emails, messages and social media excessively.

We wanted to find out the real reason people fail to unplug with emphasis on business owners. So, we asked a few CEO’s and entrepreneurs and this is what we found:

  • Business people have a fear of missing a business opportunity.
  • By unplugging, they feel they may become irrelevant.
  • There’s just too much to do.
  • They lose track of time as one task leads to many.
  • Nobody can do the work as well as they can.

These are just some of the answers we received. From these responses, it’s evident that one emotion drives the need to stay connected – fear. Whether you’re not unplugging because you lose track of time or you’re having too much to do, this behaviour is driven by fear.

How to get rid of fear and finally unplug

The good news is that you can change to become a less fearful person. Controlling your fear is ultimately what will help you to let go and experience the benefits of unplugging. Speaking of benefits, here’s what you get when you unplug:

  1. You recover from stress. Researchers discovered that people who are overly connected are also unhappy and overly stressed. Competition is tough. People may feel that being available outside working hours will show their customers that they are dedicated to their business. Although this is true, this creates an unhealthy stress level in one’s life. Experts say that human beings need downtime every day. This downtime should not only result when you’re sleeping, but one should learn to take breaks during the day. This lowers stress levels and results in a healthier mind, body and soul.
  2. You enjoy life’s simplest moments. When one is constantly plugged to technology, they miss life’s simplest and priceless moments. Experts suggest that instead of grabbing one’s mobile phone, people should take the first moments of their day to observe their surroundings, especially in nature. Doing so helps one to experience a level of gratitude for what they have. This sets the precedence for the rest of the day.
  3. Unplugging promotes creativity. Creativity is necessary for almost every kind of business, whether you are creating products or selling them. One needs creative ways to get their brand into people’s hands. When one is too busy, they don’t have the time to let their creative juices flow. Experts advise that people unplug from technology to relax their brains and exercise their creativity.
  4. Unplugging helps build meaningful relationships. As much as we think we are creating relationships via email, text or social media, research shows that people feel more disconnected now than they did a few years ago. This is because nothing beats the human interaction. As social beings, we need to see and feel emotion. Experts suggest that people take one hour per day to build meaningful relationships offline. A cup of coffee or dinner with a client, colleague or loved one can help to build such relationships.
  5. You manage your time wisely. The most common excuse for staying plugged in is the lack of time. Business owners feel they just don’t have time to get things done. The solution to this problem is to get help. A Virtual Assistant can help you with your tasks so that you can find more time to unplug.

If these benefits don’t convince you to unplug, we don’t know what will! However, if you’re ready to unplug, contact us today to hire your first Virtual Assistant!