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Are Your Digital Habits Influencing Your Productivity?

Although modern technology tools can help us to achieve our goals and in an efficient manner, we also need to be cognizant of how much time we are spending on email, Facebook, or site surfing at large. You may want to consider logging the amount of hours you spend online or texting on an average day. It may be surprising to learn how friends’ status updates or text messages are prohibiting you from completing important and even urgent tasks. In his book, The 4-Hour Work Week,  Tim Ferris recommended setting aside certain times of day to respond to emails. Following this model, on days or weeks where you need to complete urgent and important tasks to meet your goals, you may want to consider checking in online once in the morning or last thing in the evening and disconnecting from email, Facebook, Twitter, or other online communication tools the rest of the day to optimize your productivity.  Read more on Psychology Today about how you might be suffering from “connection overload” and seven tips for email management here.


About Jill Bowers

Jill is a certified family life educator (CFLE), certified family and consumer scientist (CFCS-HDFS), and a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Human and Community Development at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She developed the idea for this project when she was working on a research project where she interviewed emerging adults (18-20 year olds). Work and career related content was something about which the emerging adults were most interested in learning more, and many of the issues that were at the center of their daily concerns were those surrounding their career plans and navigating the job market. Although some of the emerging adults in the study were aware of the fact that they could find information on the Internet to answer their questions or that there were resources available through their college or University, most of them could not recall being required to participate in any professional development courses that helped them with career-related skills and most of them suffered from “information overload” related to their Internet searches for information that would help them with their career paths. For example, some of them had been told about the importance of networking (e.g., at Career Fairs), but they did not really understand what this was or how to do it. Therefore, as a result of her experiences working with emerging adults, Jill initiated this project to help FCS students by providing them with information that will help ensure their success as they navigate the job market.


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