Our Lives at Home, and on Screens: Digital Wellbeing and Productivity

It can be really difficult to stay motivated, productive, and keep ourselves while balancing the challenges of home/work/life balance.


Here are some links on digital wellbeing and productivity that are from my most recent Cambridge workshops.


Do you have any other tips to share? Let me know -- I'd love to hear from you!


Links

Thoughts on Routines -- routines and productivity often go hand in hand, here are some highlights from writers and thinkers to hopefully serve as some inspiration:

https://www.brainpickings.org/2012/11/20/daily-routines-writers


Work Life, Home Life, and Balance -- how do we draw our mental boundaries from work time and leisure time, especially now when home/work feels so blurred? Here's an excellent TED talk I recommend:


https://www.ted.com/talks/guy_winch_how_to_turn_off_work_thoughts_during_your_free_time?language=en

Schedules and UnSchedules -- I am a big fan of the UnSchedule; now more than never we want to make sure that we do make time for our fulfilling, leisure activities, that in turn can ultimately help us be more productive:


https://lifehacker.com/the-now-habit-overcoming-procrastination-and-enjoying-5658620

https://www.njlifehacks.com/the-unschedule-procrastination/


Time Self-Audit -- Where is our time going? I recommend a time self-audit, using a tool such as Rescue Time (or Screen Time on Mac and iOS devices) to get a baseline of where our time goes, and see where we might be able to make some improvements in small steps:


https://www.rescuetime.com

Related to that, here is an excellent post by The Thesis Whisperer on tracking time as academics: https://thesiswhisperer.com/2018/07/04/academicfitbit/


Zoom Fatigue -- Zoom fatigue is definitely a real thing and don't worry, it's not just you. But what can we do about it? Here are some tips:

https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20200421-why-zoom-video-chats-are-so-exhausting



Tips for Eyestrain -- We are spending a lot of time on our screens nowadays, because they've become our work and social lifetime. Eyestrain can sneak up on us though, so here are some tips to reduce before it becomes a problem:


https://justgetflux.com/news/pages/macquickstart/

https://blog.tcea.org/protect-your-eyes-chrome/

On procrastination -- This is a very good time when we should all try and give ourselves more of a break. Procrastination isn't always as bad as it sounds! Check out these helpful links for more:


https://www.njlifehacks.com/why-do-we-procrastinate/


https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/25/smarter-living/why-you-procrastinate-it-has-nothing-to-do-with-self-control.html


On rest -- Rest is absolutely part of productivity. Here are some links to think more about why we really do need rest, and ways that we can give our brains some much needed time off:


https://blog.rescuetime.com/rest/


https://www.fastcompany.com/3041688/the-surprising-and-powerful-links-between-posture-and-mood


https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/mental-downtime/


Writing and work tips and apps --


https://scribbleminds.com/productivity/time-management/pomodoro-apps-for-time-management-in-2020/


https://flora.appfinca.com/


https://thesiswhisperer.com/2011/03/24/how-to-write-1000-words-a-day-and-not-go-bat-shit-crazy/


The Cult of Busyness -- Can we get away from the academic culture of competitive misery? I think for our sanity, we can:


https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/03/busyness-status-symbol/518178/


Social Media/Time Management -- I really like the Freedom App, and here's a blog post I did on how to use Freedom for helping counter our digital distractions:


https://freedom.to/blog/tyler-shores-escaping-digital-distraction-to-read-and-write/


And more on what I discussed on digital distractions and our news consumption habits:


https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-44640959


https://theconversation.com/coronavirus-5-ways-to-manage-your-news-consumption-in-times-of-crisis-133614


https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20180110-the-vital-time-you-really-shouldnt-be-on-social-media


https://lifehacker.com/how-can-i-improve-my-short-attention-span-949006493


Additional helpful resources -- The Center for Humane Technology is a fascinating organization, helping us rethink our relationship to everyday tech use. Here are some specific tips from them on managing our digital distractions:


https://humanetech.com/resources/take-control/

Books -- Some additional reading from today's session, in case you want to learn more about any of the topics in depth!


· A room of one’s own, V. Woolf


· Manage your day-to-day: build your routine, find your focus and sharpen your creative mind, J. Glei


· Daily rituals: how artists work, M. Currey


· The now habit, N. Fiore


· Procrastination: why you do it, what to do about it now, J. Burka & L. Yuen


· Present perfect: a mindfulness approach to letting go of perfectionism and the need for control, P. Somov


· Why we sleep, M. Walker


· Deep work, C. Newport


· Notes on a nervous planet, M. Haig


· The news: a user’s manual, A. De Botton



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