How To Use Technology Healthily
Technology has improved our lives in many ways and puts almost unlimited information in our hands every day. However, it’s critical to use technology in ways that are healthy for us, and you can do just that with the ideas below.
Leave Work At Work
Whether your work is in software development, business administration, or something else, there comes a time when you should turn off your electronic devices and do other things. You may have a lot more code to write or proposals to write for that new software app your company is planning, but you should shut things off at night.
Many studies show that using digital devices after bedtime can interfere with our ability to get at least seven or eight hours of sleep. Also, using that smartphone in bed can affect the quality of your sleep, even if you are getting the required hours. Science suggests the problem may lie with the blue light that mobile devices emit; those lightwaves may affect the production of melatonin in the body, which regulates the sleep cycle.
Of course, the content that you are reading or watching on the mobile device also may stimulate your brain, which keeps you awake. That’s why it’s best to shut down your devices at bedtime or even leave them downstairs. Don’t worry: It will all be there for you on your phone in the morning!
There’s nothing wrong with social media, but it’s better for your health if you interact with people one-on-one at least a few times per week. However, many people today work in isolation in front of their PCs.
So, make an effort to go to group meet-ups, conventions, exercise groups, or just meet friends for coffee every week. If you do this consistently, the interaction with other people will be good for your mental health.
Get Plenty Of Fresh Air
Many of us need to spend a lot of time online and indoors to do our jobs. But studies regularly show that getting outside in the sun and fresh air boosts energy and the immune system. So, you should make a habit of going outside every hour or two and getting some air during your day.
Just getting off your rear, going outside, and getting some lungfuls of fresh air can wake you up so you can power through that proposal or presentation. It’s better than drinking coffee or sugar-laden energy drinks all day!
Shut Off Mobile Notifications
Many people have their mobile devices set to ring or buzz when they get a new text, email, or social media notification. Research suggests that only 19% of us shut off notifications for our social media channels. It’s common for folks to have their phones dinging a dozen times per hour or more. But those endless notifications can affect our health.
A study by psychologists at the University of British Columbia revealed that when mobile users shut off their notifications, they had less hyperactivity and inattention than when their notifications were on.
Don’t Look Down All Day
If you look down all day at a mobile device or PC, it can eventually affect your neck, back, and shoulders. It can start as an annoying pain and eventually work down your arms as the nerves are affected.
When using your digital devices, be conscious about not hunching over for hours at a time. It helps to do some stretches every hour and even get into yoga classes to limber you up.
Figure Out What Kind Of Exercise You Enjoy
One of the reasons many of us don’t exercise regularly is we never figure out the exercise that we like.
For example, many people say they don’t like running or going to the gym. So don’t do things that you don’t like to do, but figure out exercises you DO like. If you don’t like to run, get on a bike or go swimming. Or just go to a park and go on a hike.
It doesn’t matter so much what you do. It’s most important that you just get physical activity every day and are reasonably consistent about it.
These tips will help you use technology in a healthy way, which will improve your mental and physical state.
I’m a single mother of 2 living in Utah writing about startups, business, marketing, entrepreneurship, and health. I also write for Inc, Score, Manta, and Newsblaze