Tuesday, September 26, 2023 | Rabi' al-awwal 10, 1445 H
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Digital detox is necessary for the body and the mind


As the Eid holidays have been announced, many are dreaming of a long time off work commitments, maybe spending time with family and friends. But many are also looking forward to endless days of streaming movies and playing games, staying away from the sunny days outside.

None of this is very helpful. As Ramadhan allowed us to detox and connect with our inner selves, the Eid break should make us find pleasures outside the multiple digital devices around the house. Gadgets are now present everywhere, but using them diligently is both a skill and an art.

Everyone knows that addiction to electronic devices is affecting the mind in more ways than we can even imagine. Living in a virtual world of social media is impacting one’s self-image and also affects the way we think and act.

Considering that algorithms dictate what we watch and read online, the Internet is a big echo chamber in which we just listen to what we want, or at least, what the Internet thinks we want.

Tearing ourselves away from such an attractive platform is not easy. But it is necessary if we want a more meaningful life that is not dictated by what people we don’t even know feel.

This is more important in the case of parents because setting an example for a child is the single most successful way of being a parent.

It is impossible to set rules, and times, determine sites or even control use of the Internet if parents are not following suit.

The best way to spend quality time these holidays would be to stay as far away from digital devices as possible. This can help in many ways.

Reconnecting with people and the world around us is perhaps a digital detox's single most important outcome. Not being able to compulsively reach out for a smartphone will help in improving conversations in a family, and even make a simple walk on the beach pleasurable.

Improving concentration and attention span are perfect and guaranteed outcomes as well. As we all well know, it is most difficult now to stay focused on one task, one book, or one channel.

The persistent habit of scrolling and refreshing the smartphone only ensures that we flit from one idea to another, giving little thought or reflection on any single opinion. That only raises a narrow-minded individual.

We seem to have now forgotten what we liked to do as children. Painting, reading, or just walking are all forgotten hobbies for most. Avoiding devices can help us to reconnect with some of these age-old hobbies, bringing families together in shared moments of togetherness.

If all else fails, we could learn to use technology judiciously. That means that we limit our time with a device, use it in limited ways, and understand that information in it is to be read sceptically. In the long run, such a healthy relationship may work better than avoiding technology altogether.

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