Remaining Youthful in a Digital World
Regardless of one’s career and life path, each individual has a specific set of responsibilities that contributes to their daily activities. Outside of the procedural roles one must regularly maintain, though, is an individual with personal interests and aspirations.
Just a decade ago, these individual ambitions were expressed through forming hobbies and embracing new experiences. Individuals made time for activities that promote creative thinking and the simplicity of being human. As technology became a more central part of our life, however, it replaced many of the hobbies that keep us youthful.
According to Merriam Webster, one definition of the word youthful is:
Youthful • Adj.Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/youthful
youth·ful | \ ˈyüth-fəl
: having the vitality or freshness of youth
Real-world experiences involving thought, expression, and movement play an integral part in youthfulness and the overall experience of life itself. Whether we consider these activities large or small, these actions enable us to tap into our creativity, boost productivity, and establish a connection to the present.
Connected, Yet Disconnected
Technology plays a role in almost every profession to date. In fact, the use of digital tools has increased in 517 of 545 occupations since 2002. Many of these positions require heavy electronic device usage for a large portion of the workday and involve multiple devices as well.
In addition to our workplace device usage, it has become commonplace to also heavily engage with our personal devices. This means that the majority of our life is spent in the digital landscape, rather than the tangible world that exercises the human qualities that keep us youthful.
Reclaiming Our Youthfulness
Technology will, inevitability, remain part of our professional life. While we have less of the ability to unplug during business hours, it is up to us to use our electronic devices in a more deliberate while we are working. However, during our personal time, we have full management over where we direct our attention and efforts.
Challenge yourself to start powering off your devices for an hour or two and embrace digital minimalism. During this time, readapt a practice you stopped doing when you started using your phone more. This could involve going on silent walks or spending time with friends device-free. You may experience discomfort after all these years of depending on your devices. However, it is the first step to remaining youthful in a digital world.
Embracing Digital Minimalism
Once you’ve implemented some more device-free practices into your day-to-day life, challenge yourself to pick up an analog hobby. One study found that those who engage in a creative hobby performed 15-30% better at work. So, while taking an initiative that helps preserve your imagination and curiosity, you will also benefit your professional world as well.
Which activities help you remain youthful and practice digital minimalism? Perhaps you’ve found that hiking, biking, painting, or writing keeps your mind concentrated. Consider which time-subtracting actions you can eliminate or cut back on to prioritize hobbies that provide genuine perspective.
Practice Youthfulness Today
The most challenging part of embarking on any new undertaking is, arguably, getting started. This principle applies just as much to the idea of remaining youthful amid all the digital noise that exists.
Perhaps you already have an idea of your hobby-like interests. Select one of those analog activities and start practicing it today. After all, you have so much to gain and so little to lose. Need help determining your first course of action? Check out our free Digital Minimalism Activity Guide for a list of hobby ideas from A-Z.