Have you noticed that most blog posts about work-life balance, vacations and downtime encourage, advise or demand that people spend time offline? Well, this one is different.
You see, unplugging doesn’t de-stress me, because being online doesn’t stress me.
There is no “one size fits all” solution for how to relax.
If there were actually a sure-fire way to de-stress, I’d tell everyone to run 7-10 miles at least once a week. I’d also say that spending the evening at a baseball game and taking road trips are very relaxing. Meanwhile, one of my girlfriends would advise you to get manicures and pedicures while skimming through British fashion magazines. Everyone de-stresses differently.
I believe that a lot of the “unplugging” advice comes from people at the extremes: those who abstain from social media and those who are almost addicted. Maybe that’s you – but I fall in between.
You have to understand your triggers.
You know what stresses me? Not being able to access my email. Being plugged in enables me to walk out of the office secure in the knowledge that I can respond to (or deflect) a client query while I’m out hiking, finishing a long run or enjoying a game at the ballpark.
It’s part of what makes workshifting so awesome.
Of course, this does not mean that I am tethered to my email, Twitter streams or Google feeds. Most of my family and closest friends aren’t online, so my interactions with them involve no digital media. But I like knowing that I can respond to an email if I want to, share a photo of artwork with friends, find restaurant recommendations or even verify player stats or music trivia during a one-on-one conversation. These actions connect me to the world at large, which makes me happy.
Are you unplugging to de-stress? Why or why not?