Workers Are Stressed And Burned Out. A Tech Detox May Be Just What They Need
Published on September 22, 2021 – By Emma Ascott
Today’s remote work technology designed to increase employee connectivity and productivity is a key culprit in the stress and burnout epidemic.
According to Forbes, 71% of Gen-Z and 69% of Millennial employees admit they are constantly checking their work communication tools outside of work.
What could improve these depressing statistics is a technological detox – especially for online work communications.
Workplace technology and corporate culture are intertwined, and their impact on employee health and wellbeing can have a number of effects.
It’s true that reducing your technology use improves your physical, emotional and spiritual wellness. Studies show us that mobile technology usage can cause and increase anxiety.
Detoxing from stressors and unhealthy substances is common, but what about a technology detox?
What is a digital detox?
A digital detox is when a person stops using technology for a period of time. This technology includes smartphones, smartwatches, computers, and TVs. While most people can’t get rid of technology entirely, they can take breaks to focus on other parts of life.
The average American checks their phone 262 times per day, which is once every 5.5 minutes.
According to Aetna, 66% of employees admit that checking their phone for work-related messages can make them feel stressed, which 64% of them do before they go to bed and 70% of employees do first thing in the morning.
Although many of us rely on various technologies for work/our livelihoods, it’s important to reduce usage of these technologies when we aren’t working.
“We live in a 24/7 digital world but we don’t have 24/7 bodies and minds. It is important to take regular breaks away from technology and its constant demands and distractions to allow the mind to rest and rejuvenate and to nurture our relationships in the real world,” Anna Kotwinski, Co-Founder of Shine Offline, a company specializing in digital wellbeing and management, told Make a Difference.
What are the benefits of a digital detox?
Most people receive notifications, alerts, phone calls, and messages every day, or all day. Notifications can be turned off but when our devices are nearby, we’re still prone to check them constantly. A digital detox can help lower the stress and physical effects of persistent technology use.
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Tips for detoxing from technology (when you’re not working)
Reducing screen time is important
When it’s not absolutely essential for work, reducing screen time frees up more time to connect with family and friends. Cultivating in-person connections with others can help ward off symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety.
According to the Mayo Clinic, cutting down on screen time can:
Besides isolation, anxiety, and fostering unhealthy habits, overuse of technology and screens can lead to another negative aspect: eye strain. Too much exposure to the blue light emitted by digital devices can cause eye strain, headaches, itchy eyes, and blurred vision, as well as affecting sleep patterns.
Workers who must use computers and other technologies should consider their general wellbeing and take steps to make sure they are maintaining it by taking technology detoxes and reducing screen time when possible.
This content was originally published here.