Tech De-tox: Advice for Unplugging from an On-Call Doula

Today during the Chicagoland Doulas Monday Coffee Break, we discuss unplugging from technology.

Having your nose in your phone or inbox 24/7 can be detrimental to your overall well-being and that of your family. From the brightness of the screen to the stress of unlimited information spilling into the universe at a rapid rate, it’s a killer. Even worse, its dang near impossible to escape. You want so badly to look away, but you just can’t. Kind of like watching any of The Real Housewives series, ya feel?


Time away from technology is important. Nurturing creative children outside of Wi-Fi, iPhones, and laptops will benefit them greatly. Here are a few doula tips to start setting an example and weaning yourself off technology, whether you are pregnant, postpartum, or nurturing a growing family.

  1. Set an unplug time – Create a definite time of day to stuff your phone in a drawer. Say, after 8 pm. Get your whole household on the same page. If you set the standard, you have people to hold you accountable.

  2. Put up an OOTO Message – Worried about missing an important work email? As an on-call staff, Chicagoland Doulas gets it! Set an Out of The Office message to go live at unplug time. Say you are reachable by phone in the case of an emergency, and instead of turning your phone off, set it in a drawer with just the ringer turned up. Let your colleagues know you’re on a light tech-detox for, like, ever. (Totally ask your boss before you do this and don’t tell them it was our idea.)

  3. Buy an Alarm Clock – Another reason it’s so hard to unplug is because phones are also alarms. It’s hard to ignore emails coming in when your phone keeps dinging or buzzing during prime R.E.M time. Try buying a (gasp) actual alarm clock which exists solely to tell time!

  4. Read a Damn Book – Ya’ll know how much we at Chicagoland Doulas love to read. If you are anti-unplugging hours before bedtime, trying doing it right before. Instead of scrolling through social media with your head on the pillow, read one or two chapters of a real-life book. Like, with pages you must turn and stuff.

  5. Make a "Do Not Disturb" Habit - On iPhones, you can set some contacts as your favorite. We use this all the time for clients, whom we answer at any time of day or night. If you're a client, you're a favorite (obvs), and we can turn everyone else off but you. To set this up on your iPhone, go to Settings>Do Not Disturb>Allow Calls From>Favorites. Everyone you fave, you save!

  6. Create Something – Awake and antsy? Instead of reaching for that phone, create something. Break out the crayons and color with your kids. Bake with your partner or get out a journal and write. It’s invigorating to get those creative juices flowing in a different way.

Reading at home with a baby on your lap? We’re constantly updating our blog and social media with helpful information. Make sure to stay in touch!

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