How To Be More Productive, Sleep Better, Less Stressed And A Better Communicator With The Flick Of A Button.
By Antonietta Marinelli | Oct 23, 2020
In reading the title of this article it seems quite simple, and the truth is, it is.
There is no question that technology can improve our lives and has become embedded in almost everything we do. As we continue to remain in a consumed state of technology; screen time, video calls and virtual meetings has become the norm. Whether it be social connections, remote learning, Zoom work calls or even the good old social media fix there’s an argument to be made that we are guilty of becoming consumed by technology.
To put our relationship with technology into perspective we only need to look at some of the research that shows the average person touches their smartphone device more than 2,000 times a day. What’s more, this usage is likely to continue to grow in the future. At a societal level, as generations pass, technology continues to embed itself further and deeper into our everyday life ultimately leading to an increase in device consumption and use. For example, in 2018, a mobile consumer survey by Deloitte revealed that 90% of Australians have direct access to a smartphone (one of the highest in the world).
In reflecting on our main sources of information in the modern world, it’s evident that social media is now at the forefront of our marketing, news, consumerism and everyday life. According to research by ROI, the average internet user in Australia spends 5.5 hours everyday using internet services (J.P. Morgan, 2020).
So, the question is, are we harming ourselves by remaining so focused on our electronic devices? And do we indeed need a break? The answer is, possibly. There are some great health and life benefits to taking a break from your device.
Reasons to put down your electronic device:
1. It improves productivity
A 2017 study by the University of Texas, USA found that smartphones have a ‘brain drain’ effect on us, which can therefore affect our intelligence and attention span in the long run.
2. Better communication which results in better conversations
Yes, it is essential to use an smartphone or electronic device, especially during these times in order to stay connected with others. However, a healthy alternative would be to set aside from time to communicate effectively when you’ve had a little bit of a break from your device.
4. Better sleep
A study by Murdoch University in Perth found that late-night text messaging and browsing through social media before you go to sleep reduces quality of sleep resulting in depressive moods and a lower level in our self-esteem.
How many times have you checked your device today? 3-4 times? 10? How many people have you seen on your daily walk pulling out their phones to check the latest update on their web browser or Facebook page?
For many individuals, the use of a mobile phone or device is a necessity and the thought of not being able to touch your phone is somewhat daunting for some (Patchell, D., 2018). Due to the increase of remote learning and work, as well as online interactions with loved ones, we may have forgotten how to interact with people in real-life, and that is ok.
However, there are some small tips that can go a long way to re-connect yourself and give your mind and eyes a break from your devices:
1. Set boundaries!
So you want to enjoy some ‘down-time’ by scrolling through your social media platforms, that is ok! Set yourself a time-limit. The choice is yours.
2. Give another person your undivided attention
Remember to always say thank-you after meeting someone! Thank them for engaging in a conversation with you, and for allowing them to give you their time. It always is a friendly gesture to offer any assistance they may need within the future and share any knowledge you feel would be handy.
3. No notifications? No problem.
Change your device settings to receive no notifications. This is a great way to not fall into the habit of constantly having to check your device every time it pings.
- J.P. Morgan., 2020 Media Consumption in the Age of COVID-19 Global Research [Accessed 19 Oct. 2020]
- Rizzato, F., 2020, Open Signal, Analyzing mobile data consumption and experience during the COVID-19 pandemic [Accessed 18 Oct. 2020]
- Patchell, D., 2018, YourLifeChoices, The benefits of turning off your device [Accessed 19 Oct. 2020]