Feeling Digital Fatigue? Here’s What You Can Do
If you're finding yourself looking at your phone more than ever, you're not the only one
Many of us are facing a constant barrage of emails, zoom calls, webinars and much more. Despite having more time for relaxation amidst a national pandemic, it seems we’re more connected to our devices than ever before. Enter digital fatigue. If you find yourself with sore, strained eyes, more headaches than usual and you’re suffering from poor posture or increased neck and shoulder pain, chances are you might be suffering from digital fatigue.
If you’ve seen your screen time skyrocket, you aren’t the only one. The boundary between work and leisure has become ever more blurred of late but all hope is not lost. Here’s what you can do to mitigate the side-effects of too much screen time.
Avoid constant video meetings. Video meetings have been a lifeline during the pandemic and provide beneficial interaction, both socially and professionally. However, if you are feeling the strain of being on display, opt for a few phone call meetings or space out the video calls. Don’t try to book all of your meetings at once.
Schedule focus time. Shut down your apps and channel your energy into essential tasks. Recognize that email, social media and phone calls can have a big impact on your ability to focus. Keep a to-do list handy and write down what you need to respond to. Writing a note is less of a distraction than answering an unrelated email or phone call.
Use a blue light filter. When you are in front of the screens, consider using the blue light filter option. This is especially important when viewing screens closer to bedtime. For added protection, blue light filtering glasses are available in prescription and non-prescription form both locally and online.
Take breaks. Don’t forget to step away from both the screens throughout your day. Taking a quick walk or playing with a quarantine pet can help your eyes and brain relax. Consider doing no-screen activities on your evenings and weekends like hiking, yardwork, crafts or home improvement projects.
Analyze your routine. Critically think about how much of your day includes a screen. Maybe invest in an alarm clock so you are not going to bed with a screen and waking up to a screen. Are you watching television before bed? Create a wind down routine that is screen-free and prioritizes self-care. This will not only reduce your daily screen time but will result in a better night of rest.
Overall, it’s important to consider how your screen time habits are affecting your ability to focus and rest. If you are struggling with digital stressors, plan to reduce your exposure to them. Small adjustments to screen time habits can go a long way in avoiding digital fatigue.