The Need to Unplug
By Andrea Mejia
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"Life is what happens while we're busy worrying about everything we need to change or accomplish. Slow down, get mindful, and try to enjoy the moment. This moment is your life." ~ Lori Deschen
Choosing to disconnect and leave our phones and our concerns behind is a deliberate decision for many, but for me it is a necessity. The decision to disconnect and go on a trip to reconnect with myself is part of my life. Our jobs are often the biggest obstacle to unplugging. We spend most of the day at work, and most of that time we are online sending emails, updating social networks and searching the Internet. Once the work day is over, we arrive home at dinner time and many times we eat while simultaneously browsing personal Facebook, Instagram, and email accounts. I make the effort to get out of the routine and I make sure to take a vacation to get disconnected. On a recent trip to Mexico, I was lying on the beach and realized that I did not know how to relax and disconnect anymore. That’s when I decided it was time to put the phone away and enjoy my trip in the archaeological ruins of Tulum free of social networks. Since I did not want my business to suffer from this, I resorted to hiring a person to do the social media managing for my business and for my personal networks since I like to share my experiences. Disconnecting was a truly rewarding experience! The first day I almost died, but little by little the constant need to see updates on networks disappeared and I had the best time not knowing what was happening back home and enjoying my plans without having to instantly publish what I was doing. At nighttime I had fun choosing my favorite pictures and sending them to the social media manager for uploading. After this experience, I decided to start a new chapter in my life. I call it "less is best." I felt satisfied with the way I enjoyed the trip and felt that I was not missing out on my experiences because I was hooked to the phone uploading photos. It is unrealistic to think that we can banish everyone completely from our lives and give up the digital world altogether. I’m back on social media but in a more conscious way. I like the convenience of social media to communicate with people whom I love and are far from me. I believe the key to mental balance is to find the middle ground of being too connected and totally disconnected.