Close-up of a woman with a smart tablet in her hand, sitting at a table working in a coffee shop.
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Why a digital detox could be exactly what your career needs

7 Dec 2018

Despite how integral technology has become to working life, a digital detox could be the best way to help you succeed in your career.

According to Cisco, 60pc of the global population will be internet users by 2022. More than 28bn devices and connections will be online, and global IP traffic is expected to reach 396 exabytes per month.

In the working world in particular, tech is only becoming more widespread as various tasks increasingly become automated, and the economy rumbles and shifts to accommodate the seismic changes being brought on by emerging technologies such as blockchain and AI.

While many are grateful to the new possibilities opened up by technology, many are also becoming aware of its various negative effects. Though the effects of the blue light that screens emit are still being investigated, research from Harvard and the University of Toronto has found that blue light suppresses melatonin production and that prolonged exposure will decrease melatonin levels in the body. This can make it hard to both fall asleep and to get the full benefits of a night’s rest once you nod off. This will, as you might expect, wreak havoc on your working day.

Emotionally, always being connected can take its toll, too. In a professional context, this manifests in the pernicious trend of employees being expected to be ‘always on’. When the technology enables it, it can be tempting to quickly scan emails and allow the lines between work and home life to blur. Or worse, that expectation can be coming from bosses who send emails at inappropriate hours.

A survey released by Bank of America in 2017 found that 46pc of adults surveyed were in favour of a digital detox. If you don’t already consider yourself among that 46pc, this guide produced by PatioAwnings4Less makes an extremely compelling case for stepping away from your device.

There are myriad psychological and physical health benefits to giving your phone a break. Staring at screens for prolonged periods can lead to computer eye strain, which can cause headaches and even long-term sight damage. Not to mention that all the time spent looking at screens will lead to sleep disturbances, as detailed above.

In order to bring your best self to work, you also need to bring your healthiest self to work. A break from the digital realm could be exactly the refresher your mind and body need.

For more information about the benefits of a digital detox, check out the infographic below.

digital detox infographic

Click to enlarge. Infographic: PatioAwnings4Less

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Eva Short
By Eva Short

Eva Short was a journalist at Silicon Republic, specialising in the areas of tech, data privacy, business, cybersecurity, AI, automation and future of work, among others.

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