How do I switch off?
In a nutshell
- Replying to work emails and messages at all times of the day and night may seem productive, but in reality, it does damage to your mental wellbeing
- Set yourself switch-off times and don’t be glued to your phone
It's now easier than ever to be connected to work long after you've left the office, but sometimes that means we find it harder to unwind. Lina Gantar from digital marketing company, Nuuk Digital, explains how she learned to switch off and relax.
Due to the very nature of what I do, I am largely expected to be ‘always on’. Working in the tech arena and being a millennial, I absolutely love the convenience of my smart phone. I wouldn’t get half as much done without it. I enjoy being able to stay connected with friends, family and peers on my social media feeds, too, but there comes a point when you just need to almost turn the clock back and live in the moment every so often.
When I first started working, I’d regularly liaise with clients on WhatsApp until 11pm and reply to emails into the small hours. I thought that made me more productive and saved me time, when actually all it was doing was draining my energy levels and sapping my creativity and causing stress. Now, I plot time into my calendar to reply to emails several times a day and as a result I’m ten times more efficient.
My Instagram habit was also getting a bit out of control. I would share images of everything I was doing, the food I was eating, the clothes I was wearing, the places I was going… EVERYTHING! It became quite addictive to log back on to see how many likes each post had gained and that was interrupting my work, so I decided enough was enough and to have a digital detox outside of working hours.
To ensure some me-time and to give myself the chance to think clearly, I don’t reply to emails after 7pm and refrain from using social media at weekends. When people ask me if I worry I might be missing out, I say that I’m missing out less now than ever. My Instagram and Facebook feeds are full of cool and exciting things to do, but I’ve learnt that you can’t do it all and in fact, happiness doesn’t come from attempting to do everything either.
It’s extremely liberating not being glued to your phone and it’s really helped me to learn to relax and live in the moment. I’m sure more than ever that now is a pretty good place to be!