Are all your gadgets, devices, and social networking causing anxiety and stress? Turns out, according to new research, one out of three people claim they're overwhelmed by everything from email to Twitter. In the study announced last week, the University of Cambridge polled 1,300 people in the UK and revealed that feeling stressed about your communication technology can lead to general feelings of dissatisfaction with your life.
Interestingly, even younger tech users reported similar feelings of stress. The study noted that about 38 percent of the participants between 10 and 18 felt overwhelmed by too much technology, compared to the 34 percent between the ages of 25 and 34. This study follows another announced earlier this year that claimed Facebook and similar social networking sites can leave some feeling depressed.
Researchers from Stanford University in the UK showed that because people tend to publicise only good moments, photos, and events in their lives, users are left with a skewed view of their friends’ lives, feeling sad or dull by comparison. One way to avoid negative feelings associated with technology is to take steps to control it: for example, avoid distractions by turning off automatic notifications.
How to avoid tech stress
Turn off your devices for short periods of time. Your life won’t implode but expect a period of withdrawal or anxiety.
Leave your mobile phone and PDA at home one day a week. The experts recommend Saturdays.
Devise a “not-to-do list.” For instance, don’t check email before 10 a.m. Attempt to set some limits.
Accept the fact you can’t respond to 500 emails a day. You don’t have a superhuman email checking ability.
Learn moderation. Make a note of how many times a day you check your email, or how many times you scan your social networking sites, experts recommend. Realise when you have a problem, and make a practice to not be a slave to your devices.