Five Ways To Spend a Little Less Time on the Computer at Work
The way we work has drastically changed over time. More people than ever before are stuck at a desk in front of a computer screen eight or more hours a day. Although this has made us more efficient and more organized, it has also come with some serious consequences.
From fatigue to dry eyes, stiff muscles, and restlessness, there is a long list of symptoms that are common among people who spend a little too much time in front of a computer.
You won’t be able to get rid of your computer completely, nor would you probably want to, but there are ways you can minimize the amount of time you spend in front of a screen while you’re on the clock.
Clean up Your Computer
Sometimes, it isn’t the tasks you’re responsible for doing on your computer throughout the day that take up a lot of your time. Just figuring how to use your computer efficiently can take up a lot of time!
You should check your computer periodically for efficiency. A few things you can do to clean up your computer and ensure that it is functioning at its peak include:
Prevent cybersecurity threats by ensuring software is updated regularly
Install anti-virus software and regularly run scans on your computer
Get rid of shortcut icons on your desktop that you don’t use
Delete temporary files on a regular basis
Create a hierarchy of folders that make sense to you
Do Things the Old-Fashioned Way
Doing things the old-fashioned way isn’t always in style, but doing just a few things by hand can have a major impact on your day.
For example, instead of creating a calendar and updating it on your computer, get a planner and write down to-do lists by hand. When there’s a meeting, jot down notes by hand and brainstorm with a pen and paper. Your coworkers may look at you a little strange, but not only do we remember better when we write things down, it also gives you an opportunity to take your eyes away from your computer screen.
Only Use the Computer for Work-Related Tasks
Computers make working efficient because you have access to nearly everything you need with the click of a button. However, that also means you have access to distractions that can cause you to spend more time on your computer than you should. With average social media usage at 145 minutes per day, it’s easy to see how so many of us spend way more time in front of a screen than we should. Strive to use your computer for work-related tasks only. That means not checking social media websites, answering personal emails, or searching for the answer to a random question you have about the actors on your favorite TV show in between work tasks.
Actually Take Your Breaks
If you work on the computer all day long, staring at a screen when scrolling through social media or catching up on your email aren’t really breaks. Do yourself a favor and actually take your breaks.
This includes the 10 or 20 minutes you get a few times each day, as well as your lunch. A few ways to take a break that really counts include:
Take your lunch and eat it outside
Go get lunch with a coworker
Take a short walk
Do a quick workout
Pamper yourself with a manicure
Read or listen to an audio book
Choose Print, When It’s Available
We can do nearly everything online, and most of us take advantage of that. We check the news on the internet instead of reading the paper, we send a quick email instead of sending a coworker a note, we conduct research by searching websites on the internet, and we read eBooks on a tablet instead of a book.
Although it’s convenient, it turns out, there’s a reason why printed books are better than electronic books, and these reasons extend to other print materials as well. You’re more likely to retain the information you read and it puts less strain on your eyes. Whenever you can choose printed materials at work over electronic materials, you should!
You probably aren’t going to be able to get away from using a computer at work, but that doesn’t mean you’re stuck staring at a screen every minute of the day. Follow these tips so you can get away from the computer when you can. Your eyes, your brain, and your health will thank you!