Life

20 simple daily pleasures to help you digital detox

Posted by
Megan Murray
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It’s time to go analogue with these 20 tips for digital detoxing.

When was the last time you made plans with a friend, and instead of skipping through your phone’s digital calendar, you pulled out a paper diary and physically pencilled them in?

The digital era has changed so many things about the way we live, from interacting with those we love to ingesting information.

But while technology is responsible for many brilliant innovations – heck your Alexa can even help you check your breasts these days – a craving for analogue living is back on the up.

Slow living, digital detoxes and forest holidays are all terms that have popped up in the last few years in response to a need to reconnect to nature and ourselves.

And although you could book yourself into a fabulous London spa or go to a wellness retreat for some much-needed me-time away from your screen, Photobook website Popsa and Ginger Research have surveyed 2,000 British adults to find out how more of us ‘enjoying the real world’ in day-to-day life.

In a bid to get back to some of those more traditional activities and methods, people all over the country have picked out everyday things that help them feel digitally detoxed.

Some things on the list feel like a direct swap, such as cooking from recipe books (instead of looking the recipe up online), doing a weekly shop at the supermarket (instead of ordering it to your house) and listening to vinyl or CD (as opposed to a music app). Others, however, reflect specific trends like mindfulness (keeping a diary), creative expression (painting) and embracing nature (gardening and long walks in the countryside).

If you’re feeling frazzled by technology, these simple pleasures in life are not only proven to work (you can see the percentage of people that recommend them below) but are super easy to do – and to make them even easier we’ve popped in a few suggestions.

1. Cooking from recipe books - 37%

Luckily for you, Stylist prints a new recipe every week (if you didn’t pick up the latest issue, though, you can find it here).

2. Reading a good book - 33%

Not sure which tome to pick up? Here’s your guide to 2019’s best non-fiction books, brilliant science fiction and fantasy books by women and 10 powerful memoirs by black women.

3. Doing a weekly shop at the supermarket - 32%

4. Going for a long walk in the countryside - 31%

If you live in London you can still go on a country walk without leaving the city, kind of. Check out these leafy ambles in the capital, or those just outside of it. Oh, and while you’re there, you should probably check out the best country pubs within reach of London, too. What’s a country walk without a swift half after it, eh?

5. Meeting friends for coffee and talking face to face - 31%

Hello, gorgeous, unique brunch spots in London – perfect for such meet-ups. 

6. Doing a spot of gardening - 23%

If your one-bed flat doesn’t have a garden, here’s how to keep your on-trend house plants alive (and a little extra info on why getting green-fingered is so good for your mental health).

7. Going to the cinema with friends - 23%

Before planning a cinema trip make sure you check out our Under Her Eye guide to this year’s must-watch feminist films

8. Speaking to friends on the phone - 21%

9. Going shopping in store - 19%

10. Using a real calendar - 18%

11. Listening to music on vinyl or CD - 17%

12. Reading a newspaper/magazine - 17%

May we be so bold, as to remind you that Stylist wings its way to a station near you every Tuesday, so keep an eye out for our vendors, pick up some reading material for your journey, and tick this one off your list.

13. Printing out photos and putting them in a picture frame - 16%

14. Visiting a museum or art gallery - 14%

Let us present the best feminist museum and galleries in the UK. Tick.

15. Taking pics with a real camera - 14%

16. Keeping a diary - 11%

Whether you’re looking for gorgeous diaries to plan your week, or thinking about starting a bullet journal (find out why you should here), you’re welcome. 

17. Painting - 10%

Creative expression can be an amazing addition to your life, check out these creative classes to keep you calm and these alternative art courses all over the UK.

18. Writing letters to family/friends - 8%

Because they really do appreciate them, and it makes you feel good too, research even says so.

19. Going on dates through friends and colleagues (not dating apps) - 5%

And for when you do, you’ll want these cracking first date ideas

20. Joining a book club – 5%

Can you think of anyone cooler than Florence Welch to take book club tips from? We certainly can’t. Check out the Florence + the Machine star’s book club recommendations here.

Images: Getty  / Priscilla du Preez

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Megan Murray

Megan Murray is a digital journalist for stylist.co.uk, who enjoys writing about London happenings, beautiful places, delicious morsels and generally spreading sparkle wherever she can.

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