Only digital brings stress

The Apple Watch is gone and has been replaced with a mechanical that simply tells the time.

Kindle books are gone and I read from these strange things made of paper.

Task lists on my iPhone are gone and replaced with a small notebook and a pen.

It dawned on me that almost everything in my life that causes stress each day is presented in digital form.

Work emails and instant messages, spam emails at home, social media messages that annoy me, news that gets me down etc etc. It is not the fault of the products that all of these are presented on, but they are the carrier and they do not need to be.

Of course I cannot lose my work laptop, but everything else is optional.

It would be silly to suggest that reading a Kindle book is stressful, but it is digital and I do understand the enjoyment of looking from left to right at printed ink on paper. Every letter feels immovable as thought there were meant to be where they are. They are static and feel imperceptibly more real.

Writing tasks down in a notebook is a pain in the backside, but it does force me to proactively check the list and to get the things done when I have time, rather than when the digitised alarm tells me to.

The Apple Watch is perhaps the biggest change which is testament to how well it does what it is intended to do. No more immediately notifications and no more prompts to tell me when I should be standing up etc. I have no notifications set up on my Fitbit Alta and am all the freer for it.

It’s early days and I am sure that this experiment will not last, but it’s good to try and to understand just how deeply digital has invaded my life.

I have nothing against phones, laptops and smartwatches. I truly believe that they are all extremely positive, but I kind of like not feeling dependent on them, for a little while at least.

Categories: Articles

1 reply

  1. I find it interesting how different things are effectively addicting and/or cause stress for different people. I know it’s all brain chemistry, but the variations are amazing.

    I’m not on social media mainly because of the time drain. I use 2Do as my task list but I don’t find it stressful. Maybe being retired helps. I have an Apple watch but don’t use it for any tracking, fitness of otherwise. As for books, I use my iPad and find it much more convenient than paper.

    On the other hand, I’m a hockey fan, specifically for the Ottawa Senators, roughly my home town. They’ve been stressful over the past 2 years and just traded away their top 3 scorers. Games recently have been annoying. But I’ll probably watch tonight’s just because. And I have tickets to 3 more this season. But I’m not renewing. I don’t think that will lessen my hockey stress, but it will help my pocketbook.

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