Isn’t it ironic? Here you are on the Internet – reading an article about how you should get off the Internet. Don’t misunderstand; we love technology as much as the next plugged-in person. But there is something to be said for putting away the smartphone or snapping shut your laptop on a regular basis.
But once you do that … what do you do next? Here are some suggestions.
Write a Letter
We dash off dozens of emails and texts every day. But when was the last time you sat down and wrote a letter to a family member or an old friend? You know, the kind you write out longhand with a pen and paper, fold into an envelope and drop off in a mailbox. It’s a throwback, but it’s a great one – remember that tiny thrill you got every time you received something unexpected in the mail from a friend? A good old-fashioned handwritten letter is the perfect way to show a special someone that you’ve been thinking about him or her. You may feel a little lost at first without the use of emojis, but give it a minute and the words will start flowing.
Google Maps may have made the concept of getting lost a thing of the past, but there’s definitely plenty of pleasure to be found in setting out for parts unknown without the aid of your smartphone. Even the most familiar streets – ones you’ve walked down a hundred times before – have untold delights in store. Take a few meandering walks or bike rides a week and the world will start seeming fresh and new again.
Take A Nap
Don’t just shut your computer down. Shut yourself down. A short nap is a great way to give your brain a break from the screens that dominate your every waking hour. According to the National Sleep Foundation, naps can increase alertness, enhance performance, and reduce mistakes and accidents. A study at NASA on sleepy military pilots and astronauts found that a 40-minute nap improved performance by 34 percent and alertness 100 percent. We know what you’re thinking: “I can’t take a nap at work!” But more and more companies (including Google) are becoming “nap-friendly” workspaces, realizing that literally sleeping on the job can re-energize employees and increase productivity.
Play A Game
Monopoly, anyone? Instead of cranking up Netflix or surfing the web endlessly, break out a board game. From such simple favorites as Connect 4 to more complicated undertakings like Settlers of Catan, board games offer a relaxed, unhurried way to spend time with friends and family. If you’ve got kids, these games also teach valuable life skills, including reading comprehension, math skills, cooperation, vocabulary and money management (though no one really gets out of jail free, do they?).