Signs You Need a Digital Detox

With social media, laptops, and cellphones, we are connected with everyone and everything at all times. It can be great but it can also be really overwhelming. So what can you do when you’re feeling like you need a break from it all? You can do a digital detox!  

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A digital detox is a period of time when you don’t use social media and/or technology at all. That means no email, no Facebook, no Instagram, nothing. This can last anywhere from a few hours each day to unwind or it can last indefinitely.

The purpose of doing a digital detox is to remove the stress that comes with always being connected or available to others and allow you to have the time do more of what you want or need to do such as practicing mindfulness or being more productive.

Does everyone need one? Not necessarily. Some people genuinely enjoy that feeling of always being in the loop; however, there are some signs that you do need one, which we have listed below!


Signs You Need a Digital Detox, Like Now.

1. You’re having FoMO to an extreme degree.

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FoMO or Fear of Missing Out is defined as the "a pervasive apprehension that others might be having rewarding experiences from which one is absent.” In other words, it’s a constant fear of being excluded that leaves you constantly checking for any Instagram or Snapchat story updates to see what others are up to. 

Everyone gets a little bit of FoMo. When you see your friends at a party you didn’t get invited to or people going out to eat with a big group of people, it’s only natural to want to go along and have the same fun experiences.

But when you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed every single time you open Snapchat or Instagram because you’re afraid that you’re going to see all the “cool things” everyone else is doing but you can’t stop checking, you might need to take time away to reevaluate your relationship with social media.


2. You haven’t been outside.

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Our phones and laptops are addicting. They’re designed to be that way. But staying on your phone all the time, while it can be entertaining, can also have serious detrimental effects to your mental and physical health. If it’s been a while since you’ve been outside, whether that be to spend some quality time by yourself or to hang out with people you love, it might be time to put the technology away for a bit.


3. You're feeling overwhelmed or alone but you’ve been talking to people all day.

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Texting and DM’ing have allowed us to keep in touch with people we usually would not have; however, if you’re feeling socially exhausted but at the same time lonely after a day full of texting people, it might be time to step away from your phone and not expend your social energy for a bit.


4. You’re feeling down about yourself when you usually don’t.

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If you’re usually a confident person but are suddenly comparing yourself and your life to every single person you see online, it’s probably a good idea to take a break for a little while. It can be easy to be self-conscious when seeing a vlog of an influencer’s vacation or an Instagram model’s newest bikini photo and forget how highly edited and curated all of it is. Not using your social media or technology is a perfect way to be mindful of your positive qualities and to remind yourself not to believe you see everything on social media!


5. You aren’t getting anything done.

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Probably the biggest indicator you need to go on a digital detox: you’re not getting anything you need to done.

Are you missing deadlines because of late-night Netflix binges? Have you been procrastinating on something big because you’re too busy scrolling through your feed? Is your work piling up because you just haven’t gotten around to it because you’re glued to your screen?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then it might be time to reevaluate your social media habits so you can achieve balance between your work and scrolling through your feed. 



A digital detox is for anyone, not just for people exhibiting signs of technological stress. Anytime you need or want a bit of peace and quiet to yourself, go ahead and put yourself on one! You’ll be amazed at how much lighter and happier you can feel just by disconnecting for a bit.