Students begin 'digital detox' at De Montfort University

Students and staff from De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) have been taking part in a range of #HealthyDMU activities which have been organised to promote positive mental health.

It’s part of a six-day ‘digital detox’ lasting from 16-21 January, during which time the university is taking a break from posting on its social media channels and is encouraging students to do the same.

Meditation 1
A programme of #HealthyDMU activities got underway yesterday

Students are being urged to channel the time they would usually spend online into improving their mental wellbeing and dozens of people got their detox underway by attending a mass meditation session in De Montfort Students’ Union’s Campus Centre building.

The Breathing Space, which is the home of DMU’s #HealthyDMU initiative, has been utilised for activities such as yoga, while tai chi sessions have taken place on the ground floor of the Hugh Aston Building.

Students have had access to The Kimberlin Library Leisure Reading Collection and a ‘Let’s Talk About Books’ event was held to give people the chance to chat about their favourite books.

There has also been a programme of free #DMUactive sport activities including badminton, football, swimming and gym classes.

Meditation 2There was a big turn out for a mass meditation session

Third-year Media and Communications student and DMU Gymnastics captain Nassar Kaliisa took part in the mass meditation and said that it was the perfect way to relax after a stressful morning.

He said: “This was the first time I’d tried meditation. I’ve always heard that it’s something good to do so coming here today was a very good experience and I’ll definitely continue doing it. After coming here I’m much more relaxed.

“I use social media quite a lot but I think it’s the same with every other young person. After meditating today I feel like I could leave social media.”

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Mollie Footitt, Deputy President of Education at De Montfort Students’ Union, is taking part in DMU’s digital detox and said that she hopes to make a lasting change in her use of social media.

She explained: “I’ve deleted all of the social media apps from my phone and I’m taking time off from both my personal and work social media for the week to see how long it lasts and whether I actually need them. Hopefully I’ll reduce my time on social media after this week.”

She also spent her first morning away from social media by taking part in the mass meditation.

“It was wonderful to be in a room with other people and know that we’re all sitting together and experiencing the same thing,” she said.

“I’m definitely going to try and take this forward; I’m quite an impatient person and I get stressed out very easily so that simple technique of just breathing and being with yourself is very important.”

The schedule of #HealthyDMU activities will continue until ‘Blue Monday’ on Monday 21 January, which is said to be the most depressing day of the year.

Click here for more information and to see the full schedule of #HealthyDMU activities.

Posted on Thursday 17th January 2019

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