Feeling exhausted and trapped in too much use of communication and internet devices? You might have technology stress.
The widespread use of technology is causing stress in our modern world. Nowadays, technology is an essential part of our lives. In all parts of our lives, smartphones, tablets and PCs are critical for our success.
But this truth about modern living does not come without a price. While technology aims to make our lives simpler and more productive, it is also ruining our daily routine to a point that it has controlled our lives. How many times you bring your cell phones or tablets in the toilet? I bet many of us are doing this. Whether we have the fear of missing out in social media or communication loop or getting addicted to the zillions of information that the Internet brings, communications technology has controlled our daily living. Our dependence on technology has become so pervasive to a point that in our lives are seemingly worthless without them.
Our almost insatiable obsession to technology is now common, especially among young adults. Heavy use of cellphones and other devices interferes with our natural thinking and behavior, leading us to stress. One major culprit that breeds technology stress is work-connected and issued cell phones.
Workers connected to the office even after work through their mobile devices or emails have a hard time to distance themselves from work and relax. Frequent use of gadgets leads to more work-home interference. Lack of uninterrupted personal and family time results in stress and conflicts in the family.
While not harmful if occasionally experienced, routine stress connected to work and family pressures trigger health problems. At first, you will not feel any indication of stress-related diseases. It is only after quite some time that your body will experience symptoms such as headaches, indigestion, irritability, anger, and depression.
After quite some time, continued exposure to the unlimited use of devices and other sources of your stress can cause more serious, life-threatening health issues, including heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, anxiety disorder, and other illnesses. Stress can also lower your resistance from infections.
Another health concern that technology stress ignites is its contribution to sleep deprivation. Insufficient sleep is currently a public health problem in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 3 adults don’t get enough sleep.
While the lack of sleep seemed harmless, it can cause serious problems. Sleep deprivation is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents and work-related catastrophes including Chernobyl nuclear disaster. Like chronic stress, chronic sleep loss can also cause health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and cancer.
Minimize technology stress
We can no longer give up using technology in the modern world. All we can do is to adapt ourselves to the ultra-fast-paced world and minimize technology stress by doing these:
1. Change your mindset – Stress is often a product of the mind. If you allow yourself to be drowned in an ocean of unnecessary information and data, you will fall as a victim to technology stress. Likewise, many people feel helpless in the downward spiral of fast-paced changes and development. The best way to keep yourself from getting trapped in the stress loop is to have a mindful lifestyle. The first step is to know your purpose and strive to be live up to it. Once you know your personal mission, try to limit the activities and information within your life purpose.
2. Limit checking work email at home – Separate work from family life by setting a clear boundary. Whenever possible, do not check your email and any communication with your job at home. If you cannot bar work-related at home, check it at least an hour before sleep.
3. Use technology to counter stress – Technology is a two-edged sword. It can be bad and good for your help at the same time. While its effect on you depends on how you use them. Knowing the ill-effects of technology to your health and life, developers have been creating devices and apps to lower stress. There numerous downloadable apps to aid in your relaxation, sleep and other stress management. Use technology to your advantage.
4. Turn off gadgets during sleeping hours – Sleep is one of the best relief for stress. A refreshing rest at night repairs your body and relaxes your buzzing mind. Your smartphones, tablets and other communication devices can ruin your sleep. These gadgets not only keep you mind busy at night, it also emits blue light that prevents your body to produce sleep-inducing hormones.
5. Set plans/lists on what to surf on the net – As mentioned above, strive to narrow down the information you consume to your life purpose and the things you value most. Keeping a list of sites that you will browse or visit makes you more disciplined in your device use.
6. Have a hearty face-to-face conversation with your family and close friends – Direct communication with your family is critical to preserving intimacy and closeness. It also releases important hormones that relieve stress and makes you happy.
7. Meditate and pray – A relaxation exercise before sleep or during stressful moments helps calm your senses and clears your mind. Saying graces and prayers upon waking and before sleeping is also a good stress reliever.
Whether we like it or not, technology is an integral part in today’s world. To keep our calm and peace in this rat race (and to keep your sanity intact), we have to minimize stress brought about by too much use of our devices.