The Connected Lifestyle and Stress

The Gallup organization today released a new survey about stress and the always-on, connected lifestyle. They studied two groups of people: those who answer work emails outside of working hours and those who don’t use email for work.

Not surprisingly, those who use email outside of working hours find that they can never get away from their work. The tug of the electronic leash creates higher stress levels for them compared to those who don’t use email for work.

Surprisingly, however, they also found that the email group was happier. I doubt it was because of getting emails from Dubai at 3am. My guess is that this study reflects from other socioeconomic divisions which just happen to coincide with email. There’s probably a high correlation between email, income and the managerial class.

Nevertheless, there’s a high correlation between stress, weight gain and cardiovascular disease.

Last year, a garbage truck managed to rip the door off my dumpster enclosure at work. The company that did the damage told me that it was my responsibility to get it fixed and that they would pay for it (but not my time). As someone who sells time for a living and works 14 hours a day, I complained bitterly. Their response: “Welcome to the American dream.”

Over Easter weekend, I got a flurry of emails in the middle of the night, from a client in the Netherlands.  Stressful? You bet. Am I ready to throw my smartphone in the dumpster? Not really.