Technology isn’t everything, but it sure feels like it.
We use it for the majority of our interaction with each other, we use it for movies, for music, for reading, for our bills and our banking. Now, there is even talk of tech being a physical part of our being with Elon Musk’s Neural Link and Google’s continued effort wearable tech. It surrounds us and it has shaped the past two decades of life as we know it more than any human advancement in history. So much so that we barely know how to deal with it now, let alone the constant changes.
But, there is one thing that’s helped me keep track of everything in my physical life with a large helping hand from my digital one. It’s as simple as not using all of your tech for the same things but, let’s expand on that.
Here’s something I do to organize my tech to be more productive.
Split it up.
If you own a cell phone, a laptop, a tablet, a home computer, a smart watch – two or more of any of those items – you might be using them all for the same thing.
For example: have you ever been sitting at your laptop browsing Facebook, get a text, read it and then continued browsing Facebook on your phone with it still open on the laptop? Yeah, same. I realized though that this is because most of the time I browse social media it’s on my phone. So when I got that text my brain automatically thought “It would be easier if I just started looking at Facebook while my head is still looking down at this tiny screen.”
This is why it’s best to keep certain pieces of technology for certain functions in your life. You get rid of the habit of switching through the tools only to do the same thing and in turn, you are able to do more and make your daily activities more diverse.
Everyone has different needs and specific approaches to their social life, careers, and routines so no one will have their technology organized the same way. But I thought I’d share with you how I do it to give you a sense of what I mean and maybe some ideas on how to do it yourself.
For starters, I’m a writer which means I need to have writing tool. In my case, that means my laptop. It’s portable, lightweight and has all the capabilities of my computer. I really only use this thing for writing my articles and reading the research for them. Occasionally I use it to respond to social media or emails when it’s convenient but, 90% of the time I just have Microsoft Word open. Telling myself to only use the laptop for writing keeps from distracting myself by using it for anything else. If I have to pull out my phone or go to another piece of technology just to do something else I’ll be more inclined to stay at my laptop until I’ve done all my writing.
And when I’m done the writing I like to relax and do my own mass media consumption. So, being the adolescent millennial “digital native” I am, I do all of this with my desktop computer. I don’t need cable, or satellite, or a whole damn television set because I have an internet connection and subscriptions to cheaper services. My computer has a bigger screen for watching movies and YouTube and any other visual stimuli. I’ll also take advantage of the larger screen and higher performance for my hobbies – video editing, creative writing, photo editing, videogames etc. This makes my computer a relaxation station and that alone so I when I sit there I don’t have to think about work or any of my responsibilities. It is a place for only the things I want to do and have control over.
But I have to balance my leisure and career life in a healthy way and that’s where my phone comes in. Considering it’s on my pretty much at all times it probably gets used the most and has the most uses in day to day life. Primarily it’s my clock, agenda, and well, my phone of course. I keep track of time with it and keep my schedule month to month on it so I don’t forget where I am with articles/interviews, and it keeps connected with the rest my world and beyond that. This is the device I use to tack my spending and budget for monthly bills too. The mindless browsing I do with my phone on various media apps is also where I get most of my story ideas.
In summation: my laptop keeps me productive and focused on work, my computer helps me unwind and focus on myself, all the while my phone acts like a bridge between the two and a tool that keeps everything in my life running.
The tools we have at our disposal in this age are incredibly useful but, they have to be used properly and efficiently if anything is going to get done around here. So do your part and organize your life by starting with your tech!