5 ways to detox (that don't involve food)

A change of season is the perfect time to embark upon a little detoxing routine. Keep in mind that detoxes do not need to focus on food or weight loss. They can be as simple as getting rid of old products, decluttering storage spaces or even giving screen time a break. Not all of the following detox suggestions will float your boat, but I challenge you to try at least one — or better still come up with one of your own.

The bathroom detox

If you are new to detoxing or decluttering, then the bathroom is a good place to start as they generally have limited storage space. Clear out any old or unused products — old mascara, empty foundation bottles, old razor blades and so on. Keep only the products that you use and donate or discard the rest. For the lotions and potions that you do keep, plastic tubs or baskets are a great storage option.

For those super keen detoxers, you might consider transitioning to more environmentally and people friendly products.

The purse/wallet detox

Just to be clear, I am not suggesting you “detox” your wallet by spending all your hard-earned cash. The wallet detox is about getting rid of clutter such as old receipts, parking tickets, old appointment cards, business cards, chewing gum wrappers and whatever else may be lurking in there. Organise your cards so that the ones you most often use are easily accessible. After all, it is good Feng shui to have an organised, uncluttered place to hold your money.

Feeling inspired? Why not go one step further and detox your handbag, briefcase or backpack.

The wardrobe detox

Having an enormous wardrobe full of clothes seems like a fabulous idea (having flashbacks of Alicia Silverstone in Clueless). However, in reality, it can be a source of anxiety and a time vampire. When we are spoiled for choice, deciding what to wear can go from a simple process that should take 10 minutes to a long drawn out process, in which you probably end up wearing the first outfit you tried on and have created a mess that my mum would refer to as a “floordrobe”.

If the thought of detoxing your wardrobe has you twitching, then start small. Start with the sock or underwear drawer. Then, each week pick an item/category of clothing and purge. Donate clothes that you no longer need, bin the ones that are not suitable for donation. Make sure any items you keep are in good repair so that you actually wear them.

The inbox detox

This is a big one. One that I have personally found to make a significant difference to mental clarity, anxiety levels, and productivity — particularly in the work environment. Almost all of us have an inbox (or multiple inboxes) that we use every day. And every day we are inundated with email after email after email. Detoxing your inbox and implementing some organisational strategies can be incredibly powerful and reduce some of that email overload angst that we all experience.

If you are looking for a little more guidance and inspiration, then Work Smarter: Live Better by Cyril Peupion is a great read.

The digital detox

By the time you are done with the inbox detox, you will probably be ready for a complete digital detox. Given that most of us will be using some form of technology in our workplace, the weekend is probably the best time to attempt this one. The purpose of a digital detox is not just to take a break from screen time, but more so to reconnect. Reconnect with friends and family, reconnect with nature and reconnect with yourself — without the digital distractions. Of course, you don’t need to go off-the-grid completely, but for a weekend turn off notifications, log off social media accounts and forgo the television. Instead, organise a catch up with friends and family — maybe a boardgames night, weekend camping trip or just a few quiet, digital-free days.

From detoxing to healthy habits

A detox or cleansing purge every now and then is not all that difficult. The real challenge is transforming these detoxes into habits that are part of your daily routine. Creating new habits takes time and perseverance, but the benefits are likely to include much less stress and more free time.

When you give these 5 detoxes a try, take note of which one has the biggest impact on your daily life. Once you have identified your most helpful detox, go ahead and create a plan on what actions you need to take daily/weekly/monthly to keep the area in check. Practice these actions consistently for 2-3 months and what you will notice is that they will slowly but surely become habits.

Happy detoxing and habit building.

Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny.
— Gandhi