10 Steps to Taking a Digital Detox

We have so many social buttons and work email notifications pinging left, right and centre, not to mention the apps, diaries and digital notebooks that tell us what we should be doing and when, it’s no wonder it can be difficult to switch off these days.

Even when we take the odd day of annual leave, let alone a longer break, we’re still tempted to have a quick peak at emails or have a browse on social channels, only to get lost in the scroll hole when really, you hadn’t planned to get caught up in all this, you were supposed to be relaxing.

Now more than ever, it’s really important to take a forced stop so that we can take time out from work, notifications and other digital distractions, otherwise there’s a chance our health and wellbeing becomes impacted.

Sometimes we need a bit of help to switch off. Our guests often remark that our setting here at Stoke by Nayland is a big factor in their ability to unwind and forget all of life’s stresses.

That’s because our spa hotel is located in the Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, deep in the countryside on the Essex/Suffolk border – making holidaying in nature a much easier way to literally switch off.

Whether you’re in need of some good sleep, time off from a stressful job or just a chance to recoup from the daily grind, here are just ten steps in taking a digital detox:


Ten Steps in Taking a Digital Detox


  1. Stoke by Nayland golf course lake course1) Book Time Out: Take between three and seven days off work (or caring duties). This is a good amount of time to reboot when taking a digital detox. Decide, do you want to spend your time at home or away? If you chose to detox at home, you’ll just need to have extra boundaries in place. If going away, avoid the airport queues and cancellation stress by choosing somewhere within driving distance. Consider taking a short break in nature rather than a city break, as the latter is rarely restful. (We might be biased but a few nights away from home in a location surrounded by natural beauty really does something for the mind and body!)


  1. 2) Instil Boundaries: Inform work, loved ones and other commitments of your plans. Make it clear that you won’t be contactable during that time because you’re taking a digital detox and WON’T be looking at your devices. We’re happy for you to leave our front desk telephone number with any loved ones so they can get in touch in case of emergencies, allowing you to switch off entirely.



  1. Laptop icon3) Packing for a Digital Detox: Wear a watch and consider bringing a travel alarm clock and/or digital camera, so you’re not tempted to turn on your phone. Don’t bring your iPad or laptop, and turn your phone off entirely. You could even place it in one of our in-bedroom safes. (Unless there really is an urgent reason for keeping it on)
  2. Book on grass with daisies4) Rediscover Print: For many of us, turning the pages of a good book can feel much more satisfying than reading a tablet. (Also, research shows that if you read from paper, your mind processes abstract information much better.)  Use your break as a good opportunity to turn to books, magazines or even try some journaling.
  4. 5) Make other ESSENTIAL Preparations: Time your arrival with a booking at our in-house Peake Spa for a luxurious treatment such as a well-deserved massage (you’re on a detox remember! OK so it’s a digital one, but still). Some people like to book a few treatments over their stay, from manicures and facials to massages, we’ve got the lot on our wonderful spa menu. If you’d like to opt for a few treatments, you might prefer one of our spa packages.
  6. Afternoon Tea6) Take Tea on the Lawn like it’s 1982: (Yes, really that long ago.) So you’ve arrived, you’ve had a spa treatment and you’re imagining you’ve stepped back in time 40 years. There’s no Uber, Just Eats or Sainsbury’s app – what do you eat? Explore our extensive range of dining options from our Sport’s Bar with casual eats to cocktails and fine dining at our Lakes Restaurant. A popular idea for your arrival is to book one of our revered afternoon teas, with ALL the trimmings.
  8. 7) Top Up on Fresh Air & Nature: There are numerous studies that agree, time spent in nature is excellent for our wellbeing. It can improve our mental health and then there’s the additional vitamin D, which is also beneficial. Just walking around Stoke by Nayland Resort alone is a very relaxing and inspiring experience and a great mood-booster. Soak up the nature on our doorstep, the trees, flowers and the stunning layout of the golf course. If you’d like to go further afield you might like to check out our blog post about Best activities for nature-lovers in Stoke by Nayland and Colchester or check out the Explore area of our website and ideas for nature lovers.


  2. 8) Unwind with a Day on the Greens: Regardless of your level of experience, Stoke by Nayland’s golf course is one of the UK’s must-play destinations with golf activities, classes and courses for all abilities. Follow in the footsteps of golf legends for the day and play on one of our two championship courses, located within 300 acres of beautiful countryside with the challenge of lakes, streams and woodland.
  4. 9) A Blast of Sea Air: Stoke by Nayland is the perfect spot to explore the coast and truly switch off. There are lots of award-winning beaches, most are less than a 35-minute drive away. Unwind on the beach itself on warm days, try some sea swimming or water sports, or in the cooler months enjoy fresh seafood or a traditional fish-and-chip lunch by the crashing waves. If this sounds like your way to unwind, you might like to check out one of our itineraries: Escapes to the Seaside: Making the Most of the Coast.
  6. 10) Need a Rest? Last but not least, if all that fresh air has worn you out, and at any given point you need to simply do nothing but take walks on our grounds, treat yourself to a glass of fizz with lunch, read that book or simply use our fabulous indoor pool, samarium, steam room, Jacuzzi and concept shower with your FREE bookable two-hour spa facilities session as a hotel guest. There’s so much at your disposal here at Stoke by Nayland Resort, should you chose not to leave the resort and just spend your time bathing in natural beauty.


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