Technology Is Making People Less Productive

I recently read an article from USA Today discussing how social media, emails and the like are costing companies millions a year because workers are less productive now than ever before. This isn’t a new argument. It’s been going on for years since social networks like Facebook, Twitter and MySpace first appeared. But it is a vital one.

I definitely find myself wondering where all the time has gone every passing day and week when I feel like I haven’t gotten much done. I also feel a undescribable need to make sure I get to all my emails, status updates, blogs in Google Reader, etc. It’s almost impossible for me to sleep if I see a number greater than 5 glaring at me in my inbox. With advancement in technology, specifically smartphones, I feel more compelled than ever before to check all my social media and internet stuff. Prior to having a smartphone I would only check at night when I got back home from work and occasionally during work on my lunch break. The creation of the smartphone has made me connected to all these distractions 24/7.

There are some days when I’m able to disconnect myself from my phone and not think about it at all. It was especially easier when I had deleted my Facebook account two times before. But social media isn’t going away anytime soon. We must learn to adapt to this new distraction as we have with others in the past (radio, tv, video games, etc). The novelty of constantly tweeting has definitely worn off a bit for me. Though newer check-in apps like Foursquare and GetGlue have recently made me get in the habit of tweeting my every whims, I have gotten a better grasp of them and only use them more seldom now. Moderation is the key as it always is for all things fun and distracting.

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