#35 - Digital Diseases 🦠
Now more than ever, we must be vigilant about the presence of digital diseases in our professional and personal lives.
Welcome to the 35th issue of 5 Minute Friday from The Backpack CPA! Every Friday I share a short newsletter with tips & resources to help you with your professional & personal growth & development!
Let's start "GROWING" through our human journey instead of just "GOING" through it!
First a few words from a wise person…
“All this modern technology just makes people try to do everything at once.” ~Bill Watterson
Digital Diseases 🦠
This week’s topic has been inspired by a conversation I recently had with an elderly person who doesn’t use much technology and still has a flip phone. During our short interaction, they kept mentioning how back in their day people seemed to have lived simpler lives and had fewer health problems. Their hypothesis is the technology-powered world we live in is contributing to an increase in “digital diseases.”
This was the first time I heard someone say digital diseases, so it sparked my curiosity & decided to start looking more into it. Here’s an overview of what I’ve found.
So what are digital diseases? These are the negative effects that our constant use of digital devices and technology can have on our physical and mental health. As professionals, it's crucial that we acknowledge the impact of these digital diseases on our growth and development, both in our personal and work lives. Let’s take a look at some of the most common digital diseases and explore ways to better protect ourselves from them.
Digital Eye Strain
Digital eye strain has become one of the most prevalent digital diseases, considering that many of us spend the majority of our working hours staring at computer screens. The constant eye strain can cause headaches, eye pain, and discomfort that can negatively impact our productivity, focus, and mood. So, as professionals, it's crucial that we take preventive measures to protect our eyes. One of the easiest ways to shield your eyes is by investing in blue light glasses or scheduling regular eye check-ups.
Technoference refers to the constant interruption of digital devices during both our work and personal time. The constant beep or vibration of our phones or email notifications can make us feel overwhelmed and distracted, leading to a negative impact on our ability to be fully present and productive. To protect yourself from technoference, make sure to set specific boundaries for work and personal time. Turn off notifications during personal or family time, and consider setting up specific times during the day to check your email instead of constantly monitoring your inbox.
Nomophobia, or the fear of being without our phones or digital devices, has been on the rise over the years. This condition can lead to anxiety, stress, and a decreased ability to focus on tasks at hand. Overcoming nomophobia can be challenging, but try setting yourself small challenges such as taking a one-hour break each day from your phone and gradually increasing the length of that. Instead, try reading a book or pursuing any other interesting hobby to calm your mind.
Social Media Addiction
Social media addiction is the inability to log off social media platforms and contributes to negative impacts on your mental health. Excessive scrolling syndrome can lead to anxiety, loneliness, and low self-esteem. Adopting measures to manage your social media usage can help you avoid the negative impacts of social media addiction by unfollowing toxic accounts, and setting yourself time limits while spending time on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Digital exhaustion is one of the most dangerous digital diseases because it can lead to long-term burnout. Digital exhaustion is caused by the amount of time spent on digital devices without any breaks. To avoid digital exhaustion, you need to prioritize rest and seek to create a healthy balance between work and life. Set a specific time each day to unplug, pick up a book, or engage in an outdoor activity that helps you unwind and relax your mind.
Now more than ever, we must be vigilant about the presence of digital diseases in our professional and personal lives. Taking preventative measures to protect ourselves from digital diseases such as digital eye strain, technoference, nomophobia, social media addiction, and digital exhaustion, can improve our overall well-being, productivity, focus and lead to happier and healthier lives. With a conscious effort, balance, and discipline, we can maintain a healthy relationship with digital devices and technology. Don't be afraid to take the right steps to safeguard your professional and personal growth.
Pomodoro Technique 🍅
I’ve shared this tool before, but I feel like it’s important to share it again, since it’s an effective tool for helping us manage our time better and reducing our screen time. The method uses a timer to break work into intervals, usually 25 minutes in length, separated by short breaks. This method can help maintain focus, productivity, & minimize distractions, ultimately lessening the amount of time spent on screens.
To implement the Pomodoro Technique, follow these steps:
Choose a task you want to complete.
Set a timer for 25 minutes (this is one "Pomodoro").
Work on the task until the timer rings.
Take a short 5-minute break to refresh your mind.
Repeat the process. After completing four Pomodoros, take a longer break of 15-30 minutes.
There are many Pomodoro apps and browser extensions available to assist you in implementing this technique. Some popular options include:
Focus Booster (iOS, Android, Web)
PomoDoneApp (Windows, macOS, Linux, Web, iOS, Android)
Be Focused (macOS, iOS)
By using the Pomodoro Technique, you can effectively manage your time, increase productivity, and reduce the time spent in front of screens. This can contribute to a better work-life balance and help prevent digital diseases!
If you want to chat about anything feel free to send me a message or even book a time to chat https://calendly.com/vbcpa/thebackpackcpa
Stay inspired & keep growing 🚀,
Vimal (or Vic)
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