Digital Detox: The Retreat, Unplugged

Digital Detox: The Retreat, Unplugged

Located 3 hours outside of the San Fransisco Bay area and 45 minutes away from a place called Uklah, techies from all walks of life are discovering that the best remedy for the headaches of our fast-paced, Google-everything lives is to (surprise) unplug.

We think it’s a pretty interesting concept.  We are all guilty of reading emails instead of bedtime stories, or checking our phones before getting out of bed… or reading the morning paper for that matter (if we even read anything on paper anymore. *ahem!* There are news apps for that.)  So, we did a little research and here’s what we found:

It’s called Digital Detox.

For 3 days Internet-addicted attendees travel to the Shambhala Ranch in Northern California and voluntarily give up their smart-phones, tablets, laptops (even their cameras) in an attempt to completely immerse themselves in meditation, yoga, and a little tree hugging – yes, actual tree hugging – reintroducing them to a life without gadgets.

Levi Felix, co-founder of the Digital Detox, says the inspiration for this wellness retreat was born in 2009.  During that time Felix was the vice president at LA startup, Causecast, working 80 hours a week and admittedly completely addicted to his cell phone.  After being diagnosed with an esophageal tear, a condition “related to too much stress, too much coffee, too much work, and too much Thai takeout,” Felix and his girlfriend decided to quit their jobs and travel the world.  Only, upon his return, he saw that his friends and family were even more addicted to their gadgets than before he left.  He couldn’t understand it, and began his mission to save the digitally obsessed from, well, themselves.

When Internet addicts are able to detach from their devices, they are making an effort to  “gain balance, perspective and a piece of mind [sic].”  According to the company site, this time away is meant for tech addicts to decompress, regroup, and recharge their batteries, to think about life goals, get a little creative, and if nothing else, gain a clearer outlook before reentering the digital world.

Guests will share experiences with others like them (i.e. entrepreneurs, developers, owners, founders, etc.), but don’t even think about bringing a business card! Networking junkies will have to take a breather, too, as there is no cocktail hour or welcoming reception to share “what it is that you do.”  Digital Detox founders understand that conversations have a tendency to move in that direction, but it is important that the purpose of the retreat is kept in mind, and that the connections made with others should not be based on career or media influences.

So, how much is unplugging going to cost you?  For an all-inclusive experience with twin bed accommodations, you’re looking at about $595… and for a suite, think $1400.

Another option to consider: give yourself a phone-free hour. Cost: free.

Third Wave Fashion has been your fashion tech think tank since 2011. We publish the first ever printed fashion tech magazine, Third Wave.  Follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our newsletter to stay on top of the latest in fashion tech + wearables.

Leticia Domenech is a Third Wave Fashion Contributor.  She is a freelance writer, journalist, digital content strategist, and lover of business – big and small, for-profit and not.  You can tweet at her here.

Image via Mashable.

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