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How To Start a Digital Detox

A primer on the benefits of cutting back on screen time—and tips on how to get started in a way that works for you.

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Read when you’ve got time to spare.

Yes, you’re reading this on a screen. And yes, this guide is brought to you by the app Pocket, so we can hardly preach about the need to convert to an entirely off-the-grid, device-free lifestyle.

But it’s our mission at Pocket to help people spend their finite time and attention better—so that when you do devote precious minutes or hours to reading on a screen, it feels like time well spent.

But enough about us. Let’s get back to you. And the way you feel at 1am when you’ve somehow not reached the end of Twitter, despite your best doomscrolling efforts. Or at 6am, when the first thing you do is reach for your phone. Or the hours you spent watching The Crown on Netflix while doublescreening Wikipedia for facts about the royal family. We swear there’s a way out. And the first step is understanding the powerful hold screens have over us—and what practical tips we can take to break the spell.