Tools for lowering the toll of tech on your week
Are you working from home and never quite finishing up for the day? Doing one or two long days in the office each week, or quickly checking emails on a Sunday morning? With the push to remote working it’s easier than ever for your employer and customers to demand an incredible amount of your time and energy. If your emails are the first and last thing that you see everyday, perhaps this is the article for you. The following are some simple tips for finding tools to lower the toll of tech on your week without going off the grid or throwing your phone into the dishwasher.
Take a tech free day each week
It’s far too easy to get the feeling you can never leave work behind you. You are always on call and your urgent response is needed right now. It would probably be unreasonable and potentially unnecessary to ask you to take a month away from your phone, but the idea of leaving your phone off for one day over the weekend could be more reasonable. Ask yourself, how can you create a tech free day or couple of hours each week to recharge.
Make use of aeroplane mode
Some companies are starting to implement the rule that no emails should be sent between 8pm to 8am. Can you adopt this policy or a similar one that works for your life? It might sound difficult, but is it time to chat with your team about your communication strategy? It might not be 8pm to 8am but having a conversation around positive solutions for your team may increase productivity and have a beneficial impact on team morale.
Create boundaries, keep them consistent and share them
If you do start implementing tech rules such as not answering email or phone calls past a certain time, make sure you share your new system with your team or colleagues. Otherwise it may create confusion or challenges for people.
Create an automated notice so you can let go of the feeling that someone’s waiting for your reply
Don’t be afraid to write an email that auto-responds to people when you’re not available. This will mean that you don’t need to worry about people waiting for an immediate reply. If it’s an emergency they will call otherwise you can respond once you’re ready.
Schedule your social media in advance
If you are in charge of social media as part of your role, it can be easy to say you’ll still just jump on each day whilst on leave, to quickly post. There are social media scheduling tools you can use to let yourself off the hook. If you’re going away for a few days you can now schedule all your social media in advance.
Kill your feed or remove your unnecessary apps
Maybe it’s time for a social media and technology audit. What on your phone or other devices is taking up your mental energy? What platforms has you reaching for your phone on a Saturday morning? Is it worth experimenting with removing some of the apps or implementing some strategies for lowering the temptation to constantly pick up your device? One example is the ‘Kill news feed’ extension on Chrome, which removes the news feed from your Facebook and reminds you not to get distracted. There are several tools out there designed to help you take a break from technology or stay focussed on the job in hand so explore.
What sounds like a good fit for you?
One of these ideas is hopefully the right one for you and will assist in lowering the toll of tech on your week. Taking a little time to consider how and when you use your devices will help you be able to pick a strategy that works for you.