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Digital Detox: 8 Places to unplug and unwind

April 26, 2015
Nayara Springs in Costa Rica (Photo credit: Nayara Springs)

Nayara Springs in Costa Rica (Photo credit: Nayara Springs)

Are you overwhelmed every time you open your email? Do you feel compelled to check your smartphone for messages during the night?

“Once upon a time, work was work and home was home,” writes stress management expert Dr. Edward T. Creagan in the Mayo Clinic Newsletter. “There was a clear boundary between the company or the office and one’s home and personal time.”

That’s no longer the case. Advances in technology have made it easy and relatively inexpensive to remain connected 24/7 at home, at work and while traveling. Free Wi-Fi has become the most sought after amenity. No matter how far off the grid someone goes, by air or sea, they are likely to look for and find a Wi-Fi connection.

Yet, there can be too much of a good thing. “Feeling overwhelmed when you turn on your device is a sure sign you need a break,” says social psychologist Susan Newman. “Another sign you need to unplug is jumping from email to email without responding or taking appropriate action,” she adds.

Increasingly, travelers are searching for ways to disconnect from technology — at least for some portion of their vacations — so they can truly connect with people and places.

Writing for the PBS website Next Avenue, I describe eight places to visit for unplugged vacations that can help you find ways to de-stress, engage with your environment and traveling companions, and modify your habits. .

Read the entire article on unplugged vacations on Next Avenue

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  • Reply
    Laura
    April 27, 2015 at 10:02 am

    I’ve been thinking for a while about replacing my bedside iphone “alarm clock” with a standard clock radio, as I have developed some strange nocturnal habits which have been making me feel like an addict, and lately I have also felt like my sleep was suffering. Reading this made me finally do it, so thank you, Irene. I dug up Phil’s clock radio that he has had since before we were dating, so it might even be from the late 1970s:) Still works great. Then, I moved my iPhone charger to the bathroom.

    We have a land line phone for middle of the night emergencies but many people don’t keep land lines anymore, and have no choice but to sleep with their smart phones on the night stand. I’m enjoying my retro change and it gets me out of bed quicker in the morning, because of course, I can’t wait to check my phone, which I’ve been without for 8 hours!

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