Are you addicted to checking your work email? Well, knock it off. A new study says it’s bad for your health.
Researchers at the University of California-Irvine conducted a study and found that people in constant contact with their email accounts tended to have steady “high alert” heart rates, while those who weren’t had more natural, variable heart rates.
What’s more, after five days of not constantly reading and responding to messages, the latter group reported they had more time to complete work tasks and felt more in control of their work overall.
The bottom line? People who check their work email regularly exhibit higher states of stress and are less focused than people who do their jobs while being cut off from email entirely.
Lead researcher Gloria Mark, a UC-Irvine informatics professor, said that while it’s impossible for people in some professions to ignore their email, everyone else would be well-advised to take a break now and then.
“I could see people taking a day off of email if they could afford it … It would be good for their health,” she said. “We are heading towards a 24/7 connectivity [and] I think we have gone a little too far.”