Are you guilty of phubbing? Go on, you know you’ve done it at least once. Phubbing, snubbing someone by looking at your phone instead of your present company, is a very first world problem but in a society where we’re always online, it is a problem.
When you’re online all day every day, whether it’s at work, checking your emails, posting in Facebook, updating Twitter, snapping on Instagram or even reading the weekend newspaper on your iPad, it can be hard to switch off. And why would you want to?
Well, aside from being rude, according to Melbourne-based psychoanalyst Adam Szmerling, “an obsession with being online, ultimately puts us offline with regards intimate relationships, and this could impact our brains and how affects are metabolised.” Adam’s practice has been treating more and more clients with internet addiction – the side effects? Depression, social isolation, anxiety and poor self esteem.
So what’s the solution? One option is to switch off! Go cold turkey with an off-the grid, digital detox. Yes, it’s not easy to resist the temptation to check your phone but at these off-the-grid hotels, you might as well leave your electronics at home.
Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa
Tucked below a dramatic escarpment, on the edge of Wollemi National Park, there’s no phone reception at Wolgan Valley. You’re left to distract yourself with the beauty of the Blue Mountains, an award-winning spa and Heritage Suites almost too cosy to consider leaving. Almost as soon as you turn off the main road and start the half hour drive into the valley you can say goodbye to reception, but the resort does has free wifi if you’re desperate to stay in touch.
Petit St Vincent
When you’ve got 115 acres of tropical woodlands, 360 degrees of private island and two miles of sandy beach , do you really need to digitally connect? We hope not, because at Petit St Vincent in the Caribbean there’s no TV, phones or Internet connections.
Forget about calling reception, you’ll be left alone in your beach cottage to enjoy the tranquility of paradise, unless you raise the flag. The resort uses flag signals – raise the red flag to be left alone, hoist the yellow flag and a butler in a buggy will zip over, and sort out almost any request: food, massage, drinks. Hoist the red flag and you won’t be disturbed.