Working remotely may have eliminated your commute and allowed you to spend the day in your pajamas, but it also means you’re most likely bombarded with digital communication every second of the day — from personal and professional emails crowding your inboxes to push notifications reminding you of every news development to the nonstop viral allure of Twitter and Instagram.
If you are suffering from tech fatigue, or simply trying to become more productive online, here are steps you can take to organize your digital landscape.
Cal Newport, a computer science professor at Georgetown University who writes about the intersection of technology and culture, said many people succumb to what he calls the list/reactive method: They instantly react to communication — texts, emails, Slack messages — while occasionally trying to make progress on their work. One moment they’re responding to an email from their child’s teacher, the next they’re jumping on a conference call — blurring the line between the professional and personal.
“It blends together the lives completely,” Dr. Newport said. “You’re never not working. You always feel behind.”
To avoid that cycle, set a fixed digital schedule that clearly dictates when you are working, when you are attending to your family and when you are unwinding. Deal with communications concerning the different parts of your life only during those times. Put aside blocks of time to check personal text messages. And only go over the day’s headlines in the morning so you don’t casually check the news during work hours.
“In our current moment, to not look at any news seems like it would be a betrayal of your civic responsibility,” Dr. Newport said. “But on
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