I've just got back from holiday where my intentions were to have a “digital detox”. Could I manage without my many gadgets at my fingertips? The answer is no; I really couldn't. I tried hard for the first two days, but then I found that I was getting more stressed by not being able to check what was going on in the outside world. I became grumpy, and wine was not helping!
I asked myself the question, do you want to switch off from the digital world, or do you just want to turn off from work? Is it wrong to want to check-in at places, upload photos or like me, check an app to find Tupperware in the hills! (Geocaching).
I completely trust my staff 100%, and I know that the business will function brilliantly while I am away, but I still like to keep an eye on what is going on. Is that a bad thing? Do you ever actually switch off completely when you are a business owner? I found that I was secretly checking emails every morning. The number of emails that I needed to forward or action was minimal (I could count them all on one hand), and everything else could wait until I got back. I had all my notifications switched off for Slack (our internal communications system), and social media so my interruption to the holiday was minimal, but I had peace of mind that I was still in control.
My husband and I were sitting in the bar one evening, watching a Chinese man singing Elvis songs (you had to be there!), and as I scanned the room many couples were not even talking to each other, they were just on their phones. I wondered to myself if we were the same? Do I not talk to people because I am addicted to my phone? Then I realised that I was sharing stories with my husband about things that I had seen on Facebook (Terry Wogan had passed away, and one of our friends received a long service award, etc.). My husband was the same. He was telling me about things in the news, about the weather for the next few days and he was constantly telling me tips that he had found about the holiday location and locals on Trip Advisor and other sources.
This time away was also our very first holiday without our 13-year-old daughter. We both missed her like crazy, but with the internet at our fingertips, we could talk to her every day, and she could see our photos and know that we were safe.
I conclude, going on holiday and having access to the internet is not a bad thing.
What do you think?Is it a good thing to stay away from technology while you are away? I would love to hear your thoughts.