Recover from Screen Fatigue
Coronavirus has limited our interactions into the virtual space. Working long and hard over virtual platforms like Zoom or Slack is leading to exhaustion from staring at your screen all day or feeling burnt out by the excessive use of technology, what is now being referred to as Screen Fatigue.
Physical Challenge Staring at Screen
The experience of sitting has intensified while working at home, resulting in back pain, headaches, painful feet, and more. Add to that the fact of staring at a screen for prolonged periods resulting in dry eyes, poor posture, etc.
Our brain is subjected to so many stimuli flying at it from different directions(computers, TVs and phones) requires too much processing of information differently. Dealing with all that without making too many errors can be quite draining. Add to that, after these virtual calls there is a list of things to do after and we end up playing catch up with this ever-growing list.
These virtual connections over a screen lose out on almost all the subtext that makes our social interaction so rich. The non-verbal, that includes facial expressions, tone, body language, etc. is reduced to a bunch of talking heads on a screen and issues like connectivity or frozen screens just exacerbate the problem. So these virtual conversations are all more tiring than energizing.
In this work-from-home situation, people are on call all the time. There is no natural break in the day which marks the end of the working day (for example, the evening commute) or the start of the day for that matter. The clothes that mark your professional persona have been sitting idle in your closet and many of the affirming activities of everyday life like taking breaks for a coffee, going out for lunch, chitchat breaks are now not possible in the same way. Naturally, the sense of self, the boundaries that allowed you to form your identity gets disturbed, making it hard to be the best version of yourself.
It’s Time to Recover
We need to build in rituals and processes that allow our body and mind to recover from the stress—regularly, many times a day.
12 Ways to Recover from Screen Fatigue
- Keep Moving. Walk around the room, do sit-ups, or stretch. Move at least once every hour and use this opportunity to stay hydrated.
- Buffer Time. Allow some buffer time between calls that you can use for your recovery rituals. It could be as simple and short as drinking a glass of water, breathing exercises and stretches to release the muscles, or playing candy crush to energize your brain.
- Shift your Working Desk Close to Window. Periodically look away from the screen and at something far away like the sky, birds, etc. This will relax your eyes and de-stress you. Also natural light and air should infuse fresh energy.
- Nap Time Ritual. Try to create a nap time ritual in between your day schedule and sleep and wake at the same time every day to take regular breaks that mark the passing of the day. Finding a rhythm to your day helps your body and mind relax and deal with external stressors much better.
- Control stress. Stress-induced emotions consume huge amounts of energy. Talking with a friend or relative, a stroll in a verandah or balcony, listening to music, can all help diffuse stress. Relaxation therapies like meditation, self-hypnosis, yoga, and tai chi are also effective tools for reducing stress.
Try Deep Sleep Hypnosis for Mind Body Spirit Cleansing (Rain & Music for Guided Dreams Self Healing)
- Lighten your load. One of the main reasons for fatigue is overwork. Try to streamline your list of “must-do” activities. Set your priorities in terms of the most important tasks.
- Exercise Daily. Exercise almost guarantees that you’ll sleep more soundly. It also gives your cells more energy to burn and circulates oxygen. And exercising causes your body to release epinephrine and norepinephrine, stress hormones that in modest amounts can make you feel energized. Even a brisk walk is a good start.
Try 10 Minute BRISK WALK | At Home Workouts
- Avoid smoking. You may not know that smoking actually siphons off your energy by causing insomnia. The nicotine in tobacco is a stimulant, so it speeds the heart rate, raises blood pressure, and stimulates brain-wave activity associated with wakefulness, making it harder to fall asleep. And once you do fall asleep, its addictive power can kick in and awaken you with cravings.
- Eat for energy. It’s better to eat small meals and snacks every few hours than three large meals a day. This approach can reduce your perception of fatigue because your brain needs a steady supply of nutrients. Eating foods with a low glycemic index — whose sugars are absorbed slowly — may help you avoid the lag in energy that typically occurs after eating quickly absorbed sugars or refined starches. Foods with a low glycemic index include whole grains, high-fiber vegetables, nuts, and healthy oils such as olive oil. In general, high-carbohydrate foods have the highest glycemic indexes. Proteins and fats have glycemic indexes that are close to zero.
- Use caffeine to your advantage. Caffeine does help increase alertness, so having a cup of coffee can help sharpen your mind. But to get the energizing effects of caffeine, you have to use it judiciously. It can cause insomnia, especially when consumed in large amounts or after 2 p.m.
- Limit alcohol. Avoid drinking alcohol during weekdays. If you’re going to drink, do so in moderation at a time when you don’t mind having your energy wind down.
- Drink water. If your body is short of fluids, one of the first signs is a feeling of fatigue.So to increase your natural energy, stay hydrated all day.
Ways to Boost Energy
Let’s understand fatigue originates in the gut, the gut is the first place to start with regards to treatment. To lower your stress, fatigue and increase in energy you need to do following lifestyle changes and include the foods selected for their therapeutic value and benefits in either reducing levels of gut inflammation, improving digestion, balancing bacterial levels (biosis), feeding good gut bacteria and improving gut absorption of nutrients. See some examples of foods to include and avoid below.
- Eliminate the following inflammatory initiators:Sugar, Dairy products, Fried foods, Preserved Foods
- Increase Prebiotic Intake. Prebiotics are foods containing indigestible forms of fibre found in some fruits, vegetables, and starches. They act as a food source for the friendly bacteria in the gut. Try to include 1 or more prebiotic fibre sources into your daily routine: Flaxseeds, Unripe Bananas, Radish, Raw Garlic, Psyllum Husk, Raw Onion, Colostrum
- Probiotics for effective gut health and improving overall health. Include at least once daily into the routine. Fermented Foods like idli. Dosa, sooji chilla, dhokla, kombucha, kefir, apple cider vinegar, overnight fermented curd rice, homemade curd, kraut etc.
Benefits of Curd Rice in Summers | Curd Rice Recipe
- Include natural digestive enzymes. Include one from the list daily-Papaya, Honey, Kefir, Ginger, Miso, Pineapple (pineapple skin), Sauerkraut, Kimchi, Avocado, Apricots, Bananas, Kiwifruit
- Include Natural Gut Healing Food. Include one in your daily ritual-aloe vera juice, Liquorice root(mulethi), Turmeric, Coconut, Peppermint, Lemon, Ginger, Cinnamon, Apple cider vinegar
Apple Cinnamon Water- Metabolism Boosting Drink for Weight Loss
- Lifestyle Adjustments.
- Shop seasonal, local, organic and vary your diet.
- Empty your cupboard of all tempting packaged or preserved foods and sweetened drinks.
- Discipline your meal routine.
- Choose quality over quantity in your food portions.
- Increase your water intake and avoid dehydration
- Ensure you are getting enough sunlight and vitamin D
- If required, include supplements to boost energy like Ashwagandha, CoQ10, Vitamin B12, Beetroot Powder, Multivitamin, Zinc, Magnesium, Iron