How Do You Detach From Technology?

Think you might be suffering from Internet Use Disorder?


I love Sunday mornings. A little extra sleep, an unrushed breakfast, a good power walk, and the chance to really dive into email and the Internet when I get home.

After an hour, perhaps more, on the computer, being old-fashioned, I read the Sunday paper. The real paper. The one that soils your fingers with newsprint.

Last week, an article in the San Jose Mercury really jumped out at me. The headline: Reconnect with Reality.

Writer Jessica Yadegaran's basic premise is that there is growing concern by many that we're spending way too much time connecting with devices, and far too little time connecting with real life, with real people.

"Hulu in bed. iPads at dinner. Twitter on the toilet," writes Yadegaran. "According to Pew research, the average American spends eight to 12 hours a day plugged in. Research shows this technology habit is having a negative impact on our health and relationships. Don't believe it? Internet Use Disorder may soon be included in the revised Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders, due out in May."

IUD? I thought that was a birth control device. But sure enough, as with all things Internet, I shouldn't have been surprised to find there's an online site on which you can check if you have Internet Use Disorder.

Take the test here

What are people doing to fight back? Yadegaran makes mention of Digital Detox, a company in Oakland, "as a way to help people disconnect from their gadgets in order to reconnect with themselves."

In fact, going to the Digital Detox site, you'll find upcoming retreats for those who may be suffering IUD, where there is:

  • No boss
  • No Internet
  • No cell phone
  • No clock
  • No work
  • Off the grid

Wait a minute. Isn't this the premise for the movie Office Space?

What do you do to detach from technology? Is it important to you? Do you think your personal relationships suffer because you spend too much time looking at computer screens? Or conversely, are we more connected now than ever before because of Facebook, and Twitter, and Tumblr, et al?

Tell us in your comments. Then vote in our poll.

By the way. The next Digital Detox retreat costs between $500-$950. Hmm. Can't I get the (64GB, Wi-Fi + Verizon) Apple iPad with Retina Display for that?

Just G January 14, 2013 at 11:38 PM
I have a very big garden that does the trick for me on a day-to-day basis. It may just be watching bees do their thing, transplanting seedlings, or hilling potatoes. A few times per year I like to go camping - some place where there is no cell signal. I might get twitchy for a while -- but hiking, napping, slow cooking over a wood fire, and watching the flames of that campfire burn down to embers is very therapeutic for me.


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