Digital Detox at Voyageur

Did you know there is really a term known as “Digital Detox?” It’s true and it’s even in Wikipedia!

Digital detox refers to a period of time during which a person refrains from using electronic connecting devices such as smartphones and computers. It is regarded as an opportunity to reduce stress or focus on social interaction in the physical world.[1] Claimed benefits include increased mindfulness, lowered anxiety, better appreciation of one’s environment and becoming more people-oriented.[2][3]

Voyageur Canoe Outfitters is the perfect place to digitally detoxify oneself. Cell phones do not work on the Gunflint Trail and we can easily turn our wi-fi off. There aren’t televisions in the cabins and we can only sometimes get reception from one radio station.  Doesn’t this sound like heaven?

While it sounds wonderful to me the society at large would disagree.  There are people who won’t willingly go without their digital gadgets for even very short time periods. What is the problem with always having a smart phone in your hand?

There are plenty of problems to the addiction people have with their phones and other personal electronics including computers. Bad posture, trouble sleeping, headaches, weight gain, strained eyesight and sore necks are just a few obvious problems. There are more claims that social media promotes narcissism, contributes to depression and it can become addicting.

When you take away devices people change for the better. They actually look each other in the eye when they have a conversation.  Just having a real conversation without the constant scanning of a mobile device helps people’s postures. The lack of a phone also helps people to be more present in a conversation and remember the conversation later.

What did we do before Google? Now anytime we don’t know the answer to a question someone asks we say, “Just Google it or Ask Siri.” Before Google we would make guesses, create stories and go on and on about a topic but when you Google it and find the answer the conversation ends.

Dr. Yvonne Thomas, a psychologist and therapist based in Los Angeles, puts it simply: “You can be so preoccupied with your digital devices that it’s all too easy to inadvertently sacrifice time, relationships, sleep, focus, productivity and balance in your life. Many people are not even aware of the toll their extensive usage of digital devices costs them until they have suffered a loss or upset because of this.”

When you have a digital detox you feel more rested and less stressed. Who wouldn’t want to feel less stressed? I love the feeling I get from spending time away from my gadgets. I am more aware of my surroundings, I feel a sense of peace and I can focus on my family and what is important in my life.

You are welcome to come to Voyageur for your Digital Detox this winter or even better, come up and take a BWCA trip this summer. You will be happy you did.

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