How to Use Technology to Improve Your Life, Not Add Frustration

use tech to improve life

Technology can be a double-edged sword. That amazing smartphone you’re holding puts the world at your fingertips, but it also can prevent you from interacting with the person right next to you. You can do your holiday shopping, banking, and ordering pizza for dinner from a tablet or watch, but only if you remember your usernames and passwords. And then there’s the constant feeling that you have to upgrade and spend more money for the latest models. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, as though technology is managing your life, instead of the other way around.

Instead of throwing your smartphone and computer out the window and going off the grid, there are plenty of ways to use technology in a way that complements your life. Check out the following ideas:

Give Yourself Permission to Turn Things Off

Some technology is more distracting than helpful. You can minmize this by turning off all of the beeps, alerts, and noises on your phone and computer for set chunks of time during the day. If you need to be available for your kids or boss, set up a custom ring and turn off the other sounds. And when you’re at your computer, keep only the programs open that you’re using and close the rest. This can reduce the overwhelming feeling that accompanies a cluttered laptop screen.

Just Say No to the Latest Model

Having the latest and best devices may offer some benefits, sometimes all it does is drain your bank account. If you’re using your smartphone to stay on top of work emails, communicate with clients, and get your projects done quickly and efficiently, chances are good the device you already have is doing the job and you can save that upgrade money on something else (or save it until you really do need to upgrade).

Take an Honest Look at Your Needs

Before you pull out your wallet to buy some fancy new piece of tech, it’s important to assess your strengths and weaknesses and think about how technology can assist you. For example, if you love cooking, look for high-tech appliances that make it easier to pursue your passion. Some KitchenAid refrigerators have a very cool measured water fill feature that displays and automatically dispenses water in ounces, cups, and liters so you won’t have to waste time converting measurements between units. Or, if you find yourself wondering whether you turned down the thermostat, closed the window blinds, and locked the front door while you’re on your way to the office, app-enabled products, like Nest, enable you to control them from a remote location. This is especially handy if you are a frequent traveler.

When evaluating your needs, be honest with yourself about whether your life will truly be noticeably better if you buy that snazzy device that can tell you whether your eggs are still fresh or the $2,000 washer that weighs your laundry and dispenses the precise amount of detergent.

David Samadi, MD - Medical Contributor

View posts by David Samadi, MD - Medical Contributor
Dr. Samadi is a board-certified urologic oncologist trained in open and traditional and laparoscopic surgery and is an expert in robotic prostate surgery. He is chairman of urology, chief of robotic surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital and professor of urology at Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine. He is a medical correspondent for the Fox News Channel's Medical A-Team. Learn more at Visit Dr. Samadi's blog at Follow Dr. Samadi on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook.
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