I’m sure you’ve heard of diet detoxes. Going on a “cleanse” is a pointless activity, as your body has a built in detoxification device – your liver! In contrast to limiting your diet down to the bare minimum, eating a well-rounded diet, sleeping enough, and moving more will let your body work the way it should.
But the idea that you need a break from the toxic things in our everyday world applies to other things in your life, like reliance on digital tech, a messy house or office, or a toxic social life.
How often are you on your phone, tablet, or computer? While some tech use is required for our jobs, if you take a look around at the bus stop or a waiting room, you’ll see most people with their necks craned down, eyes glued to a blue screen. It’s important to recognize the role that technology plays in our careers (I’ve even written about how to make a good first impression in this digital age), but aside from those tasks, you might take a break.
Clear out the apps you don’t use, check your Screen time app to see what you’re spending your time on. Put the phone away and talk to those around you, or spend your time on a new hobby like learning a craft or trying a new group class. Try a week-long digital detox to see what you can do with your time.
Some people clean a little bit every day, keeping their house and office in order. Others (me!) go in cycles of living (and making a mess) and cleaning it up after. You can go on a messy detox by setting up goals to clean up certain areas.
Don’t just say “I’ll clean up the living room today” but break it down into smaller goals, like putting items away, dusting, vacuuming, and washing blankets. If the smell of chemical cleaners makes you dizzy, you can try using online recipes to make eco-friendly and sweet smelling cleaners to do the same things you do now.
Some people are negative specifically towards you, and some people just have a negative outlook in general. If there’s someone in your social circles or at work who is continually bringing you down, think about ways to remove yourself from those situations.
Coming up with ways to step out of a conversation steering towards gossip, to excuse yourself from a conversation with that toxic person, can help you focus on the positive side of life.
So instead of sipping green juice for the next month, try one of these life behavior detoxes instead.
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a blog about health, wellness, nutrition, and fitness from an epidemiologist / dietitian with personal trainer experience
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