Is it time to turn off your tech?

Our gadgets make life easier. Now you can get the address of that new Thai restaurant with your cell phone. You can instantly tell all your friends of your new job through Twitter and Facebook. If you don’t have time to watch the news, you can read it on the way to work on your tablet. But in some cases our gadgets distract us from the “real” world. And in some cases they decrease our productivity. When we should really be working or thinking, we’re checking our e-mails and sending texts. The New York Times recently asked the question: Would many of us benefit from short technology breaks?

Even the techies shut down

The answer, according to the Times: Yes. And the idea of a tech break has some unlikely supporters: high-use tech fans. As an illustration, the Times profiles a former Twitter employee who, while writing a book, found that he struggled to concentrate amid the constant ringing and beeping of his iPhone. So the author took the big step of ditching his tech. The result? His productivity, and creativity, greatly improved.

Many others

The Times story learned that this former Twitter worker was far from alone. The story’s author relates a game that he plays with his technology-minded friends. Whenever they gather for dinner, they all put their phones in the middle of the table. The first person who touches his or her phone before the meal comes to an end has to pick up the bill.

Your turn?

Is it your turn to follow these examples? Should you take a technology break? Take a look at your days: Do you spend hours fiddling with Words with Friends or Angry Birds? Can you pass an hour without logging into Facebook? Do you text more than you talk? If so, you, too, might gain from a technology break. And you could be amazed at how productive you can be.

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