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    August 14, 2023

    7-Day Digital Detox Challenge

    Have you ever been shocked by your screen time report? Challenge yourself to dial back your digital dependency with this 7-Day Digital Detox Challenge adapted from our new Virtual Health Fair Mainstage Session, Digital Detox

    If you want to cut back on your digital usage, why not start slow instead of trying to go cold turkey? This 7-Day Digital Detox Challenge can help you learn where you may be spending too much time on devices, replace your screen time with something more productive, and make you think before reaching for your phone during the day.



    Let your friends and co-workers know you plan to take a digital break so they don’t expect an instant reply to emails, texts, or calls. Maybe enlist a few friends, co-workers, or family members to join you in your 7-day digital detox. You will be more motivated to succeed with the support of likeminded people. Plus, you’ll add a little healthy competition and extra accountability to the mix.


    DAY 1: Embrace the opportunities!

    Reflect on the time you will have for more fulfilling activities, such as exercise, time with friends, reading, or a nature walk. List the things you want to do with your device-free time. Mentally prepare yourself to reduce screen time each day, adding more time as the week goes on.

    Device-free time today: 1 hour.


    DAY 2: Ramp up resistance to temptation.

    Challenge yourself to separate from your phone for an extended period. Do whatever is necessary to separate from it. Put it in your closet, leave it at home, or simply turn it off.

    Device-free time today: 2 hours.


    DAY 3: Set your phone to silent.

    Silence your phone, and you’ll be the one in control of when you check it, rather than being in the grip of its jingles and dings. Turn off all notifications (even vibrate). 

    Device-free time today: 3 hours.


    DAY 4: Designate device-free zones.

    By designating certain areas of your home as technology-free, you will connect better with family members and set yourself up for a more restful night’s sleep. Eat all your meals without your device in hand and keep all technology out of your designated device-free zones. 

    Device-free time today: 4 hours.


    DAY 5: Say goodbye to social media.

    Social media usage has been linked to anxiety, depression, loneliness, and addiction. In the name of your mental health, make today and the rest of your detox social media-free. 

    Device-free time today: 5 hours.


    DAY 6: Delete time-sucking apps.

    Start to purge apps that distract you from productive and fulfilling activities in your life. To start the day, think about the apps on which you spend the most time. Do you play games? Check the news throughout the day? Watch silly videos? Choose your favorites, then hold down and delete.

    Device-free time today: 6 hours.


    DAY 7: Go on a full-day fast.

    This is the grand finale of your digital detox challenge—a full 7 to 24 consecutive hours device-free. Try to schedule this on a weekend, and if you can, go to a place with poor cell phone reception, so you won’t be tempted. Plan a day at a spa or retreat center, visit a national park, or take a day trip to visit a friend and leave your phone at home. At the end of this final day, give yourself a pat on the back—you made it! 

    Device-free time today: 7-24 hours.


    At the end of your detox, reflect on the lessons you learned. It’s probably not realistic for you to abandon your smartphone or other devices altogether, but you can reflect on some of the above tactics that worked for you and be more mindful about how you are using it—and how it may be interfering with your life overall. There are ways to be mindfully engaged in life while still enjoying the modern conveniences our digital devices bring.

    List three strategies below that can help continue to limit your time on digital devices:



    I will accomplish this by:



    I will accomplish this by: 


    STRATEGY 3: 

    I will accomplish this by: 


    7-Day Digital Detox Challenge

    This 7-Day Digital Detox Challenge was adapted from



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