unplug technology

Coping with Technological Overload

Improved smartphones, faster internet speeds, and richer online and streaming content have worked together to make it difficult for us to separate from electronics. The social isolation caused by COVID has made all of us even more reliant on technology and our devices for social networking.

There is increasing information that we have a true addiction to our technology that reduces our quality of life. The overuse of electronics causes anxiety and stress, increasing the pace of our lives. Many people suffer from sleep disturbances because of increased screen use prior to going to bed. Blue light from screens stops melatonin secretion, and results in lighter, low-quality sleep.

Consider unplugging and taking specific and deliberate time out of your day to avoid interacting with electronics such as smartphones, televisions, computer screens, reading tablets, and music. Listed below are some suggestions.

1. Turn off your phone before bedtime

Try placing your phone charging station in a room other that your bedroom. This will ensure that you are less likely to be on a screen before bed, and that your first action in the morning won’t be to reach for your phone to check email, Facebook or Twitter.

2. Consider using blue light blocking glasses

If you plan to watch television or be on a screen before bed, consider purchasing anti blue light glasses. They will help improve your sleep quality.

3. Turn off notifications

By turning off most notifications this will markedly reduce anxiety and the fear of missing out (FOMO). A good place to start is to try this on weekends. Learn how to turn off sound and banner notifications on both your computer and phone. This will have the additional benefit of helping you stay more focused on the current task without distraction.

4. Explore applications to help you

There are many apps for your phone and web browser extensions that can help you manage your technology. Here are several to investigate:

  • Freedom
  • BreakFree
  • Offtime
  • Quality Time
  • Pause
  • OffScreen
  • Flipd

5. Try a Saturday or Sunday without phones

Plan a weekend hike or trip without your phone. Try keeping your phone off for the entire day. There are likely less critical reasons to stay connected on the weekend, which increases your chance of success. If you can’t manage a phone holiday, consider a holiday from all social media.

Technology has improved our lives in many ways, increased our access to information, and allowed us to reconnect with friends. These suggestions may help you control your technology use and have a more balanced, richer life.

As always, we are here for you. Please email or call if you want to set up an update meeting or talk by phone.

Ralph Broadwater, M.D., CFP®

© 2021 The Arkansas Financial Group, Inc., All rights reserved.

Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by The Arkansas Financial Group, Inc. (“AFG”), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this newsletter will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful. Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions. Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this newsletter serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from AFG. To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing. AFG is neither a law firm, nor a certified public accounting firm, and no portion of the newsletter content should be construed as legal or accounting advice. A copy of AFG’s current written disclosure Brochure discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

Please Note: If you are a AFG client, please remember to contact AFG, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services, or if you would like to impose, add, or to modify any reasonable restrictions to our investment advisory services. AFG shall continue to rely on the accuracy of information that you have provided.