June 15, 2021 10:50:51 am
In the pandemic, we have become more dependent on technology. While most of us are working from home, we are socially connected with our co-workers, friends and relatives by means of our phones. This dependency has led to, what experts call, ‘device stress’.
In the absence of physical movement and the luxury of stepping out of the house, device stress has caused a detrimental impact on our mental health and physical well-being.
What can be done to combat it?
Namita Piparaiya, a yoga and ayurveda lifestyle specialist, and the founder of Yoganama shares with indianexpress.com five effective ways in which you can reduce the burden of device stress, and lead a healthier lifestyle. Read on.
* Don’t start your day with the mobile
Reaching out for the phone as soon as you wake up may seem innocuous, but it’s likely a sign of addiction. People often have little control over their device — they will either check it as soon as they wake up or within 15 minutes. It is an unhealthy practice as it drains the brain, increases stress levels, and reduces productivity. So, make it a point to not start your day with the phone. Push it for later such as after a workout or after breakfast.
* Don’t end your day with the mobile
Ending the day with the phone interferes with sleep quality and also keeps the stress levels high. It interferes with the circadian rhythm and has negative physiological effects in the long run. So, at the bare minimum, use a blue light filter but certainly keep the devices aside at least 45-mins before bedtime.
* Give your eyes a break
Our eyes deserve a good break from staring at multiple screens throughout the day. One of the best ways to do so is to go to a window or balcony and look out far into the distance. You can also look at something green which is soothing to the eyes. And if none of it is possible, practise the palming technique. Rub your palms till you find some heat and then cup your eyes letting them rest in warmth and darkness. Stay for 5 breaths and then remove your hands as you open your eyes with a few gentle blinks.
* Take mindfulness capsules three times a day
Constant gadget use, ringing phones, or even email or message notifications create stress. They can increase our cortisol levels which is why taking short mindfulness breaks during the day is essential. Being mindful means being in the present moment — and a good way to do that is to focus on the breath. So, three times a day, for three minutes each, take time out for deep breathing. Deep belly breathing helps activate the relaxation response of our nervous system and is an excellent way to recharge.
* Find off-screen activities
Sometimes we turn to screens when there’s no other way to fill our time. Even with little gaps in the day when we can unwind, we end up using gadgets. An accessible off-screen activity that everyone can practise is doodling. Whether you’re on a Zoom call or are taking a break from a presentation, doodling is a good way to stay sharp. It improves memory, concentration and teaches you to stay in the present.
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