I have been doing this new thing called “not using technology” for small periods of time throughout my days. While some may cringe at the thought of not knowing the latest updates on their Instagram feed, I feel the need to disconnect from the rest of the word from time to time, even if it’s only for a half hour. I started to do this because I noticed how controlling technology has become.

Every time my phone goes off, I am itching to see what someone has just said to me. I’ll admit that I have pretended to be completely engrossed in my cell phone on an elevator (during many occasions) to avoid human contact.

I want to stray away from this behavior.

I want to be present, and I believe that when we are involved with our cell phones or computers, we are ignoring the outside world. The fake human contact that we think we're getting through technology does not compensate for the real thing.

The other day, I woke up before the sun. I left my phone in my apartment, and just took a walk as the sun was rising. For the first time in a while, I noticed how amazing the colors in the sky look that early. I wasn’t staring at a screen as I was walking, and I wasn’t worrying about everything I had to do that day. I really listened to the birds chirp. I’ve heard them chirp for my whole life, but that was the first time I’ve listened in a while.

I recommend starting your morning without technology. Once a week is even a good idea and it can transform the way you start your day. I know that I feel much more at peace when I start my day with myself.

Social networking comes along with technology, giving us false impressions and expectations. It can also leave us feeling depressed or anxious. People do not show who they really are on the Internet; they typically show the world the best things that are happening in their lives. We become so focused on how other people are living their lives that we become dissatisfied with our own.

Taking small breaks from technology gives you a chance to focus on yourself. It’s as simple as it sounds. Take a walk, read a book, write, do something that involves you enjoying your life and not worrying about other things.

I promise you don’t need to be reachable 24/7. Taking a break from technology can help boost your mood, and will make you feel more in tune to your surroundings. You don’t need the Internet to feel connected.