On the scale of tech addicts, I’d say I’m about a seven. I say this because I CAN live without my phone and I’ve defs met people worse than me. In fact, I’m one of the few people I know who can even put it down for an entire conversation – just saying.
But when it comes to casually scrolling through nothing important on the Gram in my downtime, I’m shocking. I’ll also admit that not documenting my life in a Story is a foreign concept to me. What can I say – I’m media, it’s a hazard of the job.
All this is to say, when QT Hotel in Sydney suggested I try their new digital detox package, Power Down, I was fairly confident I’d survive. Cocky, even.
Upon arrival, you realise they are very for real with this minimum 12-hour no tech commitment to your wellness. They lock your phone away in a box, take away your tv remote and even the digital clock.
Do I have mild separation anxiety when I hand over my phone? Yes. But I’m still coping. Mainly because in return they schwung me a complimentary goodie bag complete with powders and protein balls to balance your guts and an awesome tea bag for the bath from Addition Studio. I’m told the goodie bag normally includes a Lululemon yoga mat too, which is pretty rad.
I get into my room, do my usual ‘more excited than a small child’ thing to be in a hotel room that is actually amazing for once (for context, I’m traditionally a backpacker), and get ready for an appointment in spaQ downstairs – NBD!
Of course, on the way out the door I have my first ‘OMG what have I done with my phone’ moment. Clearly, my usual leaving the house pat-down of pockets was going to be useless here.
But tbh, 15 minutes later I was in the spa and gave absolutely zero shits about not having my phone. I even loved the steam room, which is typically not my thang. The massage was absolute magic, of course.
I swear I fully intended to get out into the world after the spa, but it turns out I was bloody starving so I went straight to my room and asked for the wellness bowl that’s included in the package. I’m vego so I got the Essential Clean Tummy Greens Bowl, but I can absolutely confirm it’s a delight and nowhere near as hippie tasting as it sounds. If you really don’t dig the bowls though you can opt for wine and a cheese platter or a cocktail and meal at the bar downstairs. Yes, you are absolutely allowed to socialise IRL during your detox.
So NOW was the time to leave the room and explore a little, right? Wrong, I went straight into the bath. I have to be honest, most of my time was spent in the bath with a book and I’m not even mad about it. It’s not like I NEVER do this, but not owning a bath sure cuts down the number of opps I get. Also, every time I’m at the ‘rents place taking a bath with my phone right next to me I admit I answer it, like, faster than lightening – kinda ruins the chill tbh. No phone? No distractions.
So did I survive? Absolutely. It was actually so nice to have time completely to myself. You know what super important texts I missed, btw? None, tbh. At least nothing that needed immediate attention.
And I realise HOW MUCH a hotel concierge can actually do for you! I mean, if you have your phone and you’re under the age of 40 you’re probably just going to google local closing times and what time to get to the train station, right? Without it, you have to rely on bugging the concierge every time, but they’re actually SO nice about it.
The ONE thing that truly gave me anxiety, though, was not having an alarm. I probably could have just begged for the clock, but I didn’t realise how much not being able to see the time would literally keep me awake at night. I mean, I had ordered a wake-up call for the first time ever in my life and I was genuinely excited for it, but I did that thing where your subconscious won’t let you sleep properly because you don’t know if you’re going to wake up without your alarm. For the record, I absolutely did wake up to the call, it was all in my head, but I’m just saying this got to me SO much more than not having Instagram or texting ability.