Dealing with new media

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Thanks to the Internet, smartphones and tablets, we are now connected with the whole world. We receive news updates in real time and can make new contacts across different time zones. New technologies enable flexible working from any location, integrating global knowledge under one roof and making many everyday and work-related tasks easier.

At the same time, everything is happening more quickly. Constant availability can also be a curse if it is at the expense of proper rest. This has an impact on health. Sleep disruption and back pain increase, while the risk of exhaustion and burnout grows.

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First things first

A quick check of your emails between a meeting and a telephone conference? Chat with friends, pick up the kids and do your shopping? In your professional and private life, doing too many things at once can quickly lead to overload. Luckily, you can counteract this.

Stay focussed
What needs to be done and when? Take it one step at a time. Decide which important things should take priority. Set aside time for phone calls or chats rather than always being on call.

Train mindfulness
Being mindful means conscious living. Mindfulness exercises are not a miracle cure for your entire plan for the week. However, they encourage us to take note of what we do, how we do it and why we do it.

Maintain balance

New forms of media have revolutionised communication, work and private life. Their effects go beyond this. Actively counteract potential complaints due to unhealthy use and look after your body and mind.

Loosen up
Neck pain is caused by rigid positions. As muscles are subject to continuous and unilateral strain, this can lead to tension. Make sure to change position regularly. Move your shoulders, head and neck with some gentle circling and stretching.

Sleep well
The blue light on your smartphone or tablet disrupts your body’s day-night rhythm. You find it more difficult to fall asleep and your sleep is less intensive and deep. You should therefore switch off your electronic devices before going to bed.

Conscious media consumption

Observe yourself
Are you happy with the way you use new media? For one day, take note of how much time you spend surfing, chatting and making phone calls. What would you like to change?

Make use of digital aids
View your daily screen usage or set your phone to turn off automatically in the evening. If your phone does not offer this functionality, there are apps that can help you.

Digital detox
Set limits for your media consumption. Often, the smartphone serves simply as a quick distraction. What would you do if you were offline for an afternoon or a day? Find out.