Do you ever feel like your cell phone is telling you what to do and not the other way around? Jean Twenge, author of iGen: Why Today’s Super-Connected Kids Are Growing Up Less Rebellious, More Tolerant, Less Happy–and Completely Unprepared for Adulthood–and What That Means for the Rest of Us, remarked in response to smartphone use: “It should be a tool that you use. Not a tool that uses you.” Do you need to unplug once in a while to find out what really keeps you going? We do too.
Though internet-access is always within arm’s reach on an Unsettled journey, we always surprise ourselves with how much of the value on our retreats come from the people, place, and purpose and not the technology. The technology is truly just the enabler of our retreats. There are too many mountains to climb, wine to drink, and conversations to be had.
There is no arguing that smartphones make travel exponentially easier (no more fidgeting with paper maps, immediate language translations are now at your fingertips, to name a few), however, we believe that when we need space and time to get away from our day-to-day routines, we need to disconnect from technology for a couple of hours per day. We need to connect with what’s in front of us and not hide behind anything. When the internet becomes a tool that we use rather than a machine that controls us, our personal world opens up.
Here are three of our favorite reasons to unplug in order to recharge:
1. Sunsets are better beyond the screen
The world is unfolding before your eyes. Take a moment to think long term. What’s important in your life? What kind of moments move you? Make you happy? At Unsettled, we make an effort to prioritize sunsets: happy hour sunsets, inspirational sunsets, double sunsets, picnic sunsets, etc. Find your sunset, and whatever it may be, let it be in the multi-dimensional world of life.
2. No time for FOMO
Making the decision, just a couple of times per day, to put down your phone and all of the apps, social media, notifications, and the world of connections outside of this moment — your moment — will give you a moment of physical and mental space to focus on what your life looks like as opposed to comparing your journey to the journeys of others. Taking just a few moments to sit with yourself, your thoughts, emotions, and surroundings can go a far way focusing on you — and recharging those parts of you that get drained or go unnurtured throughout our busy lives.
3. Move and be moved
When was the last time beautiful breakthroughs were reached while sitting on a couch staring at a 4-inch screen? Go on a walk, run, swim, or bike ride and your body releases endorphins and dozens of other neurotransmitters that positively regulate your mood. If you need inspiration or just a mood adjustment, get outside and move and you just may be moved. You can’t do that staring at a screen.