Turning off the tech

Our gadgets have made life easier. You can now get the address of that new Indian restaurant with your cell phone. You can instantaneously tell all your friends about your new job through Twitter and Facebook. If you don’t have enough time to watch the news, you can read it en route to work on your tablet. But in some cases our gadgets distract us from the “real” world. And sometimes they decrease our productivity. When we should be working or thinking, we’re checking our e-mails and sending texts. The New York Times recently asked the big question: Would we all gain from brief technology breaks?

Surprising agreement

The Times story focused on some highly unlikely supporters of the take-a-tech-break theory: techies themselves. The Times, in fact, highlighted the case of an author and former Twitter employee. This techie was writing a book. But the constant chirping of his iPhone kept him from concentrating. Once this techie ditched the phone, he found that the words flowed. His advice? Ditching the tech can significantly boost productivity.

Growing support

This writer is not alone. The author of the Times story, in fact, considers himself a techie. But he and his fellow techie fans take their own breaks from their electronic gadgets. As the author writes, when he and his friends gather for dinners, they place their smartphones in the middle of the table. Whoever touches a phone first has got to cover dinner.

Your time?

Is it time for you to have a break from your own technology? Ask yourself this: How many times do you check Facebook each day? How much time do you spend reading and commenting on blogs? Can you get through a face-to-face conversation without glancing down at that incoming text message? Tech might be overtaking your life. Take a break and you will probably find lots of real-world distractions that are equally as interesting.