Drawbacks of Technology
Q: There are studies that have shown that with the rise of technology, anxiety has risen. This may be true. It might also be a coincidence that anxiety has risen at the same time that technology has taken off in leaps and bounds. Regardless of the causalities, there are a lot of wonderful things that we can take from technology, but how do we ensure that we leave the potentially harmful effects behind?
- Set limits. Screen time limits are not just for children. Use your computer and phone for work when necessary, but set specific limits when you are home. Just as you don’t allow your children unlimited access, don’t give yourself that access. Set a good example and your anxiety will thank you!
- Make an effort to get outside and move. For every few hours that you spend in front of a screen, spend an hour walking or exercising outside. Your brain and body will be much clearer and calmer.
- Make an effort to interact with people face-to-face. The internet is a reality and we all need to know how to communicate effectively through text and email, however, we also need to know how to communicate face-to-face. Set up meetings with friends and colleagues to keep flexing your social skills muscles. For your children, set up tech-free playdates.
Anxiety has become a particularly prevalent issue in our community in the past few years. We, of course, cannot place all the blame on technology, but we can figure out ways to counteract some of its effects. In November, Dr. Andrew Schmidt will be presenting an SOS workshop entitled, “Easing the Anxious Mind.” Dr. Schmidt, a licensed psychotherapist and professor at NYU, will teach about practical skills to better manage worry and anxiety, along with exposure exercises for anxiety. If you feel like you’re dealing with more anxiety today than you were 10 years ago, join the workshop! We could all use some tips and a break from making lists!