Submitted by Carolyn Silzle, MS, MBA, RDN
are a great invention that most of us have embraced with the idea that we could
all stay more connected and more productive. But, are they now controlling our
quick quiz to see how your rate:
How many electronic devices do you carry with you on a
– One cell
phone or two?
– A tablet?
– A laptop?
device just to listen to music or books on your commute to work?
– A personal
How many of these do you really need each day?
Have you ever e-mailed your partner regarding an event
or just general information when that person is sitting right next to you on
When was the last time you watched television without
looking at another screen at the same time?
Finally, for those of you who work in information
technology, do you ever dream of Excel® spreadsheets?
I do not
know about you, but I am guilty of all of the above. I own a tablet and an iPod®.
In addition, my work furnishes me with a BlackBerry® and a laptop. I will not
begin to count all the desktop computers we have in the house—not all work. I
help to support the electronic health record at a hospital where I used to work
as a registered dietitian, so, I spend my day staring at a computer screen.
Then in the evening, I often am back online, catching up with volunteer
assignments and announcements for a couple of groups. It is pretty obvious that
my screen time can get out of control.
When I feel
this happening, it is time to get off the grid. I am just back from a 2-night
stay in a bed and breakfast in North Carolina, near the Smoky Mountains. Our
cell phones had no service and the Internet was only available on the front
porch and living room. This is my kind of vacation! I could not work, even if I
wanted to do so. I tried to look at the Internet to simply find directions as
to where we wanted to go and not to check e-mails.
found that vacations without the Internet are the best. This can include time
in a state park or even an extended road trip. Our hospital adds specialized
users one group at a time, such as surgery or emergency services. After one
implementation, I suggested camping. After 2 days in a tent, all I cared about
was a hot shower and my own bed. Everything electronic can wait!
next time e-mail gets you down, just remember that Gmail did not start until
2004 and the first cell phones (the size of a brick) were introduced in 1983. People
before then survived, so I guess we can too!