Feeling Stressed? Blame Your Emails

  • December 23, 2014
  • Science
  • Comments Off on Feeling Stressed? Blame Your Emails

Feeling Stressed? Blame Your Emails

Checking emails is as addicting as social media and thanks to technology you can easily add your dozen email accounts so that they load on all your devices like tablets, smartphones, smartwatches, etc. This means that if you’re constantly using your device, you’re most likely also always checking your email accounts.
About a 183 billion emails are sent and received in one day, which really says a lot about society (even though many of them probably are promotional emails). Although you might think nothing of it, new research says the more you refresh your inbox, the more stress you become.

The study by the University of British Columbia found that people became more stressed out after checking their emails all the time and suggest that you should only check your accounts throughout the day a maximum of three times. Any more than this number and you’ll be stressed out.

The study involved 124 adults and researchers made them check their email only three times a day for an entire week. Then the week following that, they were encouraged to check their emails as much as they wanted (basically, how many times they checked it before the study). Participants were also asked to fill out a daily 10-minuate questionnaire that noted their stress levels.

During the week they only checked their emails three times a day, their questionnaires reflected that they were much happier than the week that they checked it as many times as they pleased. So could the answer to a happier life be to unlink your Gmail account to your phone? Possibly!

It’s said that the average person checks their email accounts up to 15 times in one day, which can really add on to a person’s normal stress levels. So why the added stress levels for just checking something as simple as emails?

Well, for starters, an email from work can turn a great day bad. Some emails hold emotional baggage, while others remind you of what you’re supposed to be doing or buying. When you constantly check emails, your attention is always being diverted and this can be pretty taxing on your brain, the study suggests. Many participants in the study did admit that it was quite difficult to be limited to how many times they check their email, which caused them to stress out a bit. But then afterward, they showed huge drops in their stress levels – admitting to feeling calmer and more at peace.

According to the study, it’s best to check your email in chunks so that you only forced to look at it three times a day rather than constantly looking at it and responding to messages as they come in. To feel less stressed, it’s advised to spread out those three times throughout the das, checking your email once in the morning, afternoon and night.

Try it out yourself for a week and you’ll soon notice a difference in your stress levels!

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