St. Vincent & The Grenadines are attempting to entice burnt-out workers to leave their technology at home and go through a digital detox on their next holiday to one of 32 Caribbean islands.
Perhaps your New Years' resolution was to go away on holiday and relax. But how many of you will be bringing your smartphones and tablets with you? Are you willing to switch them off and leave them?
The first branded 'Digital Detox' holiday on offer requires holidaymakers to 'de-tech' and hand over all of their devices -- including mobile phones, tablets and anything else that allows Internet access.
The campaign to get visitors to 'switch off' is intense enough that one island bans the use of Blackberrys on its beaches. Some establishments offer no television, phones or Internet access.
To prepare holidaymakers before they board the plane, the package deal includes a guide to digital detoxing (.pdf), and sessions with a lifestyle coach to help you cope with going cold turkey.
Reasons cited for creating this package include the idea that it is becoming more and more difficult to separate home life and work. With increased development of mobile technology, not only are you more contactable than ever before, but the ability to 'check in' with work emails is a likely distraction at home.
Your iPad is sitting there, and the email notification on your smartphone is flashing that irritating green light. The work-home balance has become blurred, and I predict that a large majority of working professionals probably worry that if they don't keep tabs on what's happening, they may miss something important.
SVG also believe that due to the increased reliance of technology in our society, we have lost the ability to live 'in the present' -- surrounded by constant distractions and increasing stress levels across the board.
Could you go on a complete digital detox? Personally, I think I would probably end up with the same symptoms as caffeine withdrawal and suffer with irritability, boredom and mood swings. As part of the Generation Y, I've grown up accustomed to environmental data saturation, noise and monitor screens.