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What is Digital Wellness and Why Does It Matter?

Young casual Businessman holding and using smartphone for sms messages, hipster man typing touchscreen cell phone in the cafe. business, lifestyle, technology and Social media network concept

| September 15, 2021 |

WHAT IS DIGITAL WELLNESS AND WHY DOES IT MATTER?

We live in a fast-paced, connected, technology centered world and are often looking for the next best tech sensation. It’s easy to get stuck in an unhealthy relationship with technology. This is where digital wellness or digital well-being comes in. According to Made of Millions, a mental health advocacy organization, digital wellness or well-being means using technology mindfully, intentionally, and compassionately so that it doesn’t damage yours or others mental and emotional well-being.

 

For most of us, there is no eliminating tech from our lives. We touch our smartphones 2,600+ times a day and it’s hard to think of an aspect of our lives that tech doesn’t touch. We use it for dining, shopping, health and fitness, home monitoring, travel, work, dating, leisure and staying connected. With tech so woven into our everyday lives, it’s important to find balance. Being digitally well requires you to tune into how the technology you use makes you and others feel. The best way to accomplish this is to be mindful about your habits and tendencies. If you or a loved one notice that you’re using one or more forms of tech too much or you are turning to technology instead of connecting with others; then it is time to examine and rebalance your relationship with tech.

 

You can start to regain balance by avoiding the use of two screens at once and trying meditative techniques to stop you from reaching for your phone when you are bored or feel uncomfortable. You can also be picky about what apps you allow to send you notifications and learn about your tech, so you get all the benefits possible when you do use it. To truly disconnect, stop using technology to fill up free time and recognize when you don’t need to be connected, like after work or on vacation.

 

We must try to use technology to enhance our lives, relationships, knowledge, sense of calm, and connection with others. Focus on how tech supports positive interactions, helps you spread compassion, kindness and contributes to important causes you believe in.

 

Wondering if you are too connected? Take this 12-question quiz to find out: https://virtual-addiction.com/digital-distraction-test/

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Emotional Eating and How Stress Impacts Your Diet

Girl eating pizza sitting on couch and watching tv

| September, 8, 2021 |

EMOTIONAL EATING AND HOW STRESS IMPACTS YOUR DIET

Have you noticed that you have a tendency to raid the fridge or cupboard when you are stressed? That is called emotional eating and it is a coping mechanism for stress, boredom, loneliness, fear, worry, anger, grief and depression. We all get caught with our hand in the cookie jar occasionally but regularly letting our emotions run our eating choices can have a negative effect on our health.

When we are stressed, our bodies go into a fight or flight response and release cortisol. Cortisol signals the body to store fat in case we need energy in the future, and it increases our appetite. Research has shown that depending on our feelings, we make different food choices. For example, when we are angry, we choose crunchy foods and when we are sad, we reach for sugary treats. We have sweet soft foods when we are anxious and salty foods when we are stressed. The act of eating distracts and soothes us.

The key to managing our emotional hunger is to pay attention to what we eat so we don’t get into a cycle of managing our emotions with food. Use a food journal or a food app on your phone to track your food, emotional state and stress level during the meal or snack. Journaling helps you to see your habits clearly. Use a hunger scale before you eat to evaluate if you are truly hungry or eating due to emotions. The chart below shows the differences in physical and emotional hunger.

Using these tools and having awareness of emotional hunger and how stress impact may lead to you to healthier habits.

 


Source: What stress and diet have in common? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OD4Wnmy2rwQ

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Signs of Substance Abuse in the Workplace

Man With Migraine From Computer Work. Bored And Stressed Sad

| September 1, 2021 |

SIGNS OF SUBSTANCE ABUSE IN THE WORKPLACE

Since most of us spend the majority of our day at work with our co-workers, it is important to take notice if a coworker has a change in productivity or attendance. While the signs below could be depression, other mental health issues or a medical condition, it is helpful to know they might be signs of substance abuse too.

  • Being late to work, often with no explanation
  • Leaving work early
  • Making mistakes on easy tasks
  • Falling asleep on the job
  • Taking longer and longer lunch breaks
  • Going to the bathroom more often
  • Using all their days off or sick time
  • Having problems meeting deadlines

They might also have a change in personality, behavior, or appearance. You may see that they:

  • Pay less attention to hygiene than they used to
  • Are antisocial, especially if they used to be outgoing
  • Are more moody or angry
  • Have dilated pupils
  • Have a runny nose
  • Mention suicidal thoughts
  • Tell lies about themselves
  • Loss or gain weight unexpectedly
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts at inappropriate time

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