Paul Abraham: Seven tips on how to make technology your servant, not master

17 May 2020

By Bramley’s Paul Abraham, of www.headingonwards.com

Technology has changed the world, it’s made life easier and is now so integrated in the existence of individuals that it is quite impossible to do without.

However, during the enforced “lockdown” the most vulnerable among us can be overwhelmed by the temptation to spend more time than normal on our laptops, iPads and smartphones. 

Within the four walls of your room it can be very easy to forget time and be submerged in Facebook, Instagram and the many other online connections and forums.   

A recent UK study showed that since 2006, the percentage of adults who use the internet daily has grown from 35%, to 86% in 2018, while weekly use has declined, from 16% in 2006 to 4% in 2018.

Furthermore, the proportion of those who had not used the internet in the last three months has fallen from 40% in 2006, to 9% in 2018. 

Stanford University reported that people who used many forms of social media while trying to accomplish other tasks had reduced scores on memory and concentration tests and were less able to filter out irrelevant information resulting in losing focus and becoming more stressed.

So let’s look at ways to control our usage of our communication technology, here are seven tips on how to take back control and ease any technostress which may be starting to develop within you.

  1. Make your computer desktop simple and easy on the eye by trying to avoid having too many icons on show.  This will also cut down on possible eyestrain.
  2. Unsubscribe from unwanted mailing lists and blogs which clog up your mailboxes.
  3. Delete accounts or files you no longer use and set up a logical filing system for your documents to enable to find specific items quickly and easier.
  4. Organise your bookmarks to make easy to navigate.
  5. Pick an internet homepage that just takes you to a search engine that won’t bombard you with news, celebrity gossip or meaningless adverts or offers.
  6. Don’t follow too many “friends”. Limit your social media friendships to people you genuinely care about.
  7. For each hour of work in front of a computer screen or other device, it is recommended to take a 10-minute rest to relax your mind and eyes.

The wonderful learning and enjoyment achieved via our various devices is something to value and experience but try and make the technology your servant and not your master.

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