As we get overwhelmed with work, kids, school, extracurricular activities, and social events, it's easy to forget about the maintenance and health of our tech . . . and ourselves. Since Spring is the time to refresh your home, it's also the perfect time to refresh your habits where your tech is concerned. Are you guilty of these 10 bad habits? Find out what they are, and how to turn things around below!
- Working in poor ergonomic conditions — Sitting for hours in front of your computer — whether you're at an office or working from home — is bad enough, but throw in the poorly positioned monitor, a chair that's not supporting your back, and a desk that's too small for your stature, and you have a cocktail for body aches and pains. Check with your HR department to see what kinds of ergonomic assessment services are available to you so you can get your desk in tip-top shape. Working from home? No sweat — let this Osha ergonomic evaluation checklist help you set up a healthy home office.
- Letting your tech get dirty and grimy — Your tech is pretty disgusting. Sixteen percent of phones have feces on them, while home keyboards hold 60 times more germs than a public toilet seat. Make a habit of cleaning your tech once a day, or even once a week with proper cleaning agents to cut down on viruses and bacteria that could make you sick.
- Obsessing over your phone at improper times — We've grown quite accustomed to our smartphones helping us in our everyday lives, but they can easily drive a rift between you and your friends, family members, and fellow earth-dwellers at large. Keep your phone off the dinner table, don't chat in the bathroom stall or the gym, and keep your voice down when having a conversation on the bus. You know, just use common sense.
See the rest of the list after the jump.
- Not backing up your data — A majority of you probably still aren't backing up the contents of your computer on a regular basis, am I right? Let this serve as another reminder. Backing up your data to an external hard drive (that you keep in a safe place) insures that you won't lose precious memories, documents, and information you might need later.
- Regular, hours-long video game sessions — Going on hour four of an epic gaming marathon? I'm sure you're just waiting until the next level to take a break (which is what you said 10 levels ago), but not taking a break to stretch, get your blood moving, and drinking water isn't just bad for your back. It could actually kill you. Sitting for long periods of time can be dangerous for your heart and create fatal blood clots, while inactivity can lead to weight gain. Wouldn't you rather stretch every 15 minutes than deal with all that?
- Not maintaining a proper shutdown routine — Laptops are awesome because you can just close the lid and go, right? Well, not if you want your machine to live a long and healthy life. Actually putting your laptop to sleep instead of shutting the lid will keep your computer from overheating as all action will be brought to a halt. But don't forget to actually shut down your computer on the regular, too.
- Bringing the tech to bed — Not getting enough sleep lately? Your tech could be to blame. Bringing your tablet, smartphone, or laptop to bed at night has been linked to sleep problems. The light these electronics omit is likely to stimulate your brain into thinking it's daytime, delaying your body's ability to fall asleep. Try to keep your tech away from the nightstand, and shut down all your gadget goodies well before you hit the hay.
- Skipping your system updates — Clicking that "cancel" button when you see a system update might be easier than having to restart your computer in the middle of a project, but it spells bad news for your machine. Making sure all your programs, antivirus, and operating system updates are up to date is essential to keeping your computer running smoothly and securely.
- Having a lame password — Is your password 1234 or abcd? You're at a big risk for getting hacked, my friend. Creating hacker-proof passwords for all of your most-visited websites isn't as hard is it seems, and putting in the effort is infinitely easier than trying to deal with the aftereffects of getting your identity stolen.
- Forgetting to optimize your tech batteries — It's easy to plug-n-play when it comes to your tech, but optimizing your battery the first time you use your new gadget, then every few months thereafter will help keep your battery a top performer. First, fully charge the battery, then let it run down completely before fully charging again.
Source: Flickr user mad_wraith