Most if not all of us spend too much time in front of a screen. Televisions, smartphones, laptops – we are surrounded by screen, after screen, after screen. As a result, our relationship with technology can be bittersweet. As awesome as it is to have all of the information we ever needed right at our fingertips, our health and productivity depend on our ability to unplug.
Between my career and studying for my Master’s degree, I am constantly in front of my laptop or cell phone. Each time I unlock my mobile, I am tempted to check my social media feeds and often fall down the rabbit hole of clickbait. Before I know it, sixty minutes have passed and I'm wondering where the time went. On top of this, I find my sleep interrupted or lacking. Sometimes I can even feel my eyes becoming strained, followed closely by a pounding headache.
Chances are, your prospects and clients suffer screen fatigue as well. To help them combat this, I found a few mobile apps and browser extensions that you can share in your next newsletter!
Research shows that that blue light emitted from screens and monitors can interrupt sleep patterns. If you are on your phone or computer well into the evening, or close to bedtime, you may have experienced this firsthand! f.lux is a browser extension that adjusts the color of your computer's display to adapt to the time of day – "warm at night and like sunlight during the day.” Long story short, by reducing the harsh blue glow, f.lux may help you power down and fall asleep more easily, especially if you find you're staying up too late working or checking Facebook.
FYI: There is a smartphone version of Flux, but I find that another app called Twilight works a little better on my Android.
How much time have you or your employees lost to time-wasting websites? Maybe your team has a procrastination problem and accidentally loses hours of productivity to entertainment and leisure websites and apps. It's so easy to say you'll only spend five minutes setting your Fantasy Football lineup or taking a Buzzfeed quiz. Encourage staff to add the StayFocusd Chrome extension! With it, users can block any and all distracting sites for custom time periods. I also recommend an extension called TaskTimer, where you can set your own schedule and view analytics that measure Internet activity and time spent browsing the Web.
We've all been there. Someone shares a compelling article, and then all of a sudden you find yourself consuming a never-ending string of suggested readings. Then, you look at the clock only to wonder where the time went! Sign up for a Pocket account to save Web pages, videos or articles you wish to visit at a later time! This app integrates with most browsers and will sync your saved content across all devices. And the best part is that you don't even need an Internet connection! You can access everything you add all in one convenient place.
This vision protection extension notifies you regularly when it's time to stop staring at your computer or smartphone screen so that you may rest your eyes. It even provides suggestions for what to do during your breaks to minimize discomfort! Use eyeCare in conjunction with Screen Shader to reduce eye strain and headaches.
Modern business doesn't always follow the typical 9-5 schedule. With increased IT mobility, employees are easily spending more time staring at their screens. In implementing the preceding list of apps and extensions in my work and personal life, I've found myself more alert and productive at work. Help your prospect and client base achieve the same desirable results by passing these tools on!
Note: If you choose to use these extensions, most are available across all mobile devices, but some also require the Chrome browser. Keep in mind that there are multiple equivalents of each platform out there for whatever browser or smart device that you are using.
By Gretchen Hoffman