TechnoStress Doesn't Have to Be the Result of New Technology

TechnoStress can be a challenging type of stress to experience, especially if you are not a geek or any type of technical wizard.   It’s the kind of stress experience when we are interacting with our sleek, newly-innovative technical gadgets, and they are getting the upper hand.  It seems that we can’t get through a day without using these technical gadgets and computers.  Computers are a part of every aspect of our lives, including televisions, radios, smart phones, washing machines, and coffee makers. 

technostress at work

Now these Smart Phones, IPads and PDA’s allow us the technological advances to make our work portable.  We can access our data anywhere, communicate 24/7 and always be current with the latest happenings.   Tweeting, pinging, pinning, tagging and emailing never were easier.  Yet, have you ever felt overwhelmed, as though you can’t get away from the bombardment of work and messages.  That’s the effects of technostress.  And it doesn’t appear to be letting up any time soon.

These technological devices have improved our lives in many ways but there is also a need to make certain that they don’t control our lives.  If not controlled, the messages we send and receive appear to have a sense of urgency.  People start to expect immediate responses.  If no response is received, another message is often sent, urging a reply.  But if you really consider the information being transmitted you will find that these messages are not urgent.  Consider whether your work and attention is being interrupted to stop and answer every message that arrives on your device as soon as it appears.  Not a good way to efficiently use your time in the long run.  A false sense of urgency just adds to your stress level.

What Causes Technostress?

  • The latest improvements. Everything is being upgraded and improved.  Sleeker, more efficient and with a updated set of directions.  It’s difficult to keep up and just when you master one device, another hits the market.  Remember the VCR’s that we mastered.  Now they are obsolete.  The DVD’s have taken their place, along with internet downloads for the computer.
  • Multitasking.  Although not planned, often with different technological devices operating simultaneously, we try to attend to many tasks at once.  We expect ourselves to handle more things because the devices allow us to produce work at a more efficient pace.  This pace may start to put pressure on us to increase our work output which results in us experiencing techno stress. This is when you need to practice effective time management strategies.

  • Little standardization among different devices.  These gadgets often have different operating systems and different parts that only work with that particular device.  Have you bought printer ink cartridges lately?  There are a lot to choose from--you better know your printer model.  Or better yet, sometimes it is just cheaper to buy a new printer than the ink cartridge replacement.  I'm not kidding. It is.

How to Handle Technostress

1.  Create a schedule that provides blocks of time to attend to work that needs your utmost focus and turn your phone devices off.  Schedule specific times to answer emails and texts.  Limit your social media visits to certain times of the day so that you don’t find yourself consuming too much time chatting.

2.  Match your communication technique with they type of information you are sharing.  Emotional messages are best conveyed face to face, not with a text or email where communication can be misinterpreted.  Also, guard against relying totally on your emails and texting to communicate with workers and family members.

3.  Carve out time away from the computer and electronic devices.  Bring your family together to share meals, recreational activities, spiritual outings, and just plain talking.  If you don’t make time for the family connecting time, you may find each member attending to different music devices, video games, and computer activities.  Getting away from the electronics can give you time to replenish and rejuvenate energy levels.  Techno stress can appear to increase in intensity if you are tired and lower in patience levels.

Lower Technostress with Good Time Management Skills

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