A digital detox podcast

A digital detox podcast

Listen to the podcast about doing a digital detox to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.



Presenter: So, we're back in the studio. Welcome back, everyone. My name's Rick Walker. From our laptops to our televisions, from the displays on our smartphones to those on our satnavs, we are in front of screens all the time. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to disconnect completely? To choose not to have access to the internet? If you have, you may be in need of a digital detox – a total switch-off from all things digital. The idea of people taking a digital detox is becoming more and more popular, especially amongst young people – and today we're joined by someone who's tried a number of digital detox activities and is here to give us some advice about it. Amanda Vince, welcome to the studio.

Amanda: Thank you very much.

Presenter: So, Amanda, you work for a fashion magazine in London, right? I guess your work means you need to be online a lot.

Amanda: Oh, yes. Apart from the hundreds of emails I get every day, I'm always browsing fashion websites, as well as online videos. I also need to be very active online, especially on Twitter and Instagram – sharing what we're doing in the magazine, interacting with designers, photographers, influencers … it never stops, literally. Then of course there's my friends and family to keep in touch with online too, and for me, my work grew out of my passion, so friends and work colleagues aren't two totally separate groups of people and it all gets a bit messy online sometimes. I think I'm online for at least 12 hours a day.

Presenter: So, how did you get the idea for a digital detox?

Amanda: I read a book about it, called Log Off: How to Stay Connected after Disconnecting. The author's name is Blake Snow. That book gave me some really good advice and made me think about trying to change some of my digital habits. I started with removing distraction.

Presenter: What do you mean by that?

Amanda: That means turning off alerts, buzzes, alarms or notifications of any kind. I had notifications set up for everything, and it meant I was always being forced to look at my phone. Removing all of them except for important contacts helped me focus immediately. The book also made a really good point, that we should ask ourselves 'Why?' every time we take out our phone. I realised that most of the times I looked at my phone were because I was trying to avoid or ignore something else happening right in front of me. It was an automatic habit.

Presenter: I have to confess, that happens to me too. But what else are you going to do when you're standing in line at the bank or waiting for your train?

Amanda: OK, yes, I'm the first to admit that it's great for helping time go by. But speaking personally, I found I wasn't just checking my phone to kill time when I was alone. I was also doing it with friends or family around.

Presenter: Hmmm … right. Well, so far, this doesn't sound too drastic. Turning off notifications and becoming aware of when we use our devices. That sounds easy.

Amanda: Yes, it's the first step. Once we begin to realise just how much of a grip our devices have on us, then we're ready to really take the next step. First, my partner and I did a weekend with absolutely no screens. She found it easier than I did. For me, it was a little bit scary at first but it turned out to be a pretty rewarding experience.

Presenter: A whole weekend, huh? I don't know if I could ...

Amanda: I think everyone has to do this at their own pace. If a weekend feels too much, maybe just try for an evening. Then work your way up to more. I guarantee, once you've tried it, you'll want to try it again. We're going to try for a whole week in the summer.

Presenter: OK, let's pause there then and see what our listeners have to say. You can call us here directly, or send us a message on any of our social media channels ... oops, should I be saying that? Anyway, more after the break. 

Task 1

Task 2


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Average: 4.2 (72 votes)

Submitted by Jeedapa on Tue, 21/06/2022 - 13:40


Of course, I am addicted to social media, and this isn't good at all. I've noticed that I spend most of my time on social media. I don't have that much interaction with people in real life. And it also impacts my mental and physical health.

Submitted by vaavilag on Wed, 18/05/2022 - 17:33


I really think everyone needs to do a digital detox. I see all the people staring at their phones even when they are surrounden by friends or family.

Submitted by Anna 229 on Fri, 29/04/2022 - 16:30


Honestly, I do like to do it. But I don't think it comes to me easily. I have to learn via digital devices all the time.However I decide I will try it at least once.

Submitted by jmajo on Fri, 25/03/2022 - 15:14


Yes I would, but I have to admit it's a bit difficult nowadays because most of the work I do, It's needed to be done interacting with screens, so I think it could be a good idea to try it at the evening when I'm not working, switching the smartphone for a book before I go to sleep. I think it would be impossible to completely disconnect from screens due to the tasks we do day by day, maybe in the countryside that could be a bit more viable than living in a city, but farmers are using more and more technology to help them get their job done though. When I'm at home I try not to use my phone most of the time, I try to spend time growing vegetables to avoid screens.

Thanks for the lesson.
Great site.

Submitted by ninaals on Sat, 19/02/2022 - 02:04


I actually don´t find it hard to stay away from my phone, however there are some moments when I am physically tired to the point that I have no energy to get out of bed and be productive , in those kind of moments I give in and start scrolling through tiktok,always trying not to compare myself. Nevertheless after some time of doing this, I´ve come to he conclusion that it´s way better to read a book. at least to rest my eyes.

Submitted by LyubovK on Mon, 07/02/2022 - 09:07


I would like to do a digital detox because I believe it will improve my emotional state, for instance, I will feel less depressed, happier. And browsing websites, distracting to videos when I feel tired or emotionally exhausted are my problem. I struggle to decline the time I waste on the Internet, any social media.

Submitted by misty on Mon, 10/01/2022 - 00:27


It is quite hard for me to do a digital detox because technologies help me to ease my anxiety and reduces my stress level especially at work. So, listening to a music or watching some funny shows detoxifies my inner self.

Submitted by Windy on Tue, 21/12/2021 - 12:32


I think I can’t do complete digital detox because I’m studying from websites like yours most of the time and attending online class from zoom. But I tried to cut off my social media like Facebook, instagram and twitter. I think that’s all I can do.

Submitted by vuhoap on Tue, 14/12/2021 - 00:24


Speaking personally, I like to do a digital detox. It helps me to kill time when I was alone or was trying to avoid or ignore something else happening right in front of me. I always access the internet, browse websites, interact on the social media for at least 8 hours a day of week.

Submitted by ceehinh on Sun, 28/11/2021 - 11:47


yes, It's gratifying when I have done digital detox for 4 5 months. as you know, in recent months, we have had to stay at home because of lockdown by COVID 19. in the time, I find myself spending too much time surfing the internet, Facebook, Instagram,... it that things that make me distract and not to finish to-do list that I plan. I think I spend a lot of time just lying on bed and browsing social media frequently. I was shocked when I look back on the time screen on my phone, it was almost from 6 to 7 hours a day. It was useless so I decided to change the bad habit. So, what I did do? um it's always quite difficult at the beginning when you try something new, digital detox is no exception. I have cut down the amount of online social media time gradually. besides, I switch off all notifications relate to entertainment, just keep some app that is about a study to remind me if it was necessary. and I also make a check message habit on time in the day. that is what I do to change and detox social media.