Category Archives: Workplace

10 Tips for Mindfulness in the Workplace

10 Tips Mindfulness In The Workplace - Eminent SEO

First, let’s start with a quick definition of mindfulness before we get all gung-ho about it:

Mindfulness Definition - ESEO
So, basically, it’s being in the moment, focused on the here and now. That is not an easy feat with deadlines looming over your shoulder like a fasting vampire breathing on your neck. Now that you have that visual in your mind, let’s get back to the topic at hand: mindfulness in the workplace.

Deadlines, emails, phone calls, meetings, more emails, presentations … no, don’t run from your desk! Keep reading!

You must be asking yourself how can you possibly consider applying the principles of mindfulness so that you feel less zombie-like and more alive, as well as becoming more productive. Here are a few ideas to get you started on your journey to being mindful at work:

1. Be Consciously Present

Mindfulness Goggles - Eminent SEO More than anything, mindfulness is about being fully aware and awake (yes, go get ANOTHER cup of coffee), rather than just working on autopilot. When you are consciously present at work, you become aware of two things in your moment-to-moment activities:

  1. You notice what’s going on around you.
  2. You notice what’s going on within you.

Being mindful at work means to be aware of, at all times, in that moment, what you are doing while you are doing it. It also involves managing your mental and emotional state. If you are creating a proposal or a report for the big cheese or the little guy, mindfulness requires that you give it your full attention.

Each time your mind wanders to things like that funny cat video you watched or what you read on Facebook about the Kardashians, acknowledge the thoughts and then bring your mind back to the task at hand.

Here are a few tips to change mindlessness into mindfulness and increase your productivity:

    • Make a clear decision at the beginning of your workday: Begin with a clear idea of what you wish to accomplish.
    • Slow and steady wins the race: While you become used to the practice of mindfulness, you may find you work a little slower at first, but it will pay off in the long run.
    • Remember WHY you are doing this: Keeping the why in mind helps motivate you to keep going.
    • Give your undivided attention to every task: Yes, even the mundane, everyday tasks such as opening the door, pouring that third cup of coffee, or even breathing while you wait for a meeting to start.

2. Make Use of Short, Mindful Exercises

Check Yes Or No - Eminent SEOOK, stop everything. We need 30 minutes of your time to go over some mindfulness exercises. What? No time? Yeah, me neither. But, that doesn’t mean we cannot be mindful, as these exercises can be as short as time allows. Even taking 1 minute to sit back, clear your mind and refocus your attention on your senses is technically a mindfulness exercise. That’s it? Yep, that’s it.

No closing your eyes, no sitting down: just 60 seconds realigning your thoughts. Be creative and find time throughout your day to do these exercises. Have a few more minutes? Fantastic!

Barely have time to breathe between calls? That’s fine, too. These short exercises are important. They help you rebalance your nervous system, reduce your fight-or-flight response, and reinvigorate the “wise” part of your brain so on the next call you will be calm, clear and focused on winning that new client.

3. One Thing at a Time

Pencil And Checklist - Eminent SEOOh, you think you are a master tasker. You can multitask like no other? Well, I hate to break it to you, but no one is really a multitasker. Our brains just aren’t made to do it, try as we might.

Multitasking is really just switching back and forth really fast, and in most cases, losing data in the process. Multitasking is inefficient, and yet we continue to do it. In fact, there are studies that have shown the more you multitask, the more addicted to it you become.

So let’s kick that habit and become a mindfulness bad ass. Here are a few tips to get you started:

Try a Time Journal

Track what you are accomplishing in a block of time, and note when you were single-tasking or multitasking. Add what you achieved in that time frame and how mindful you were.

Try Categorizing Tasks

Group together your tasks to accomplish in one block of time. Put emails, phone calls, errands and meetings together. Rather than jumping around, use the dedicated time.

Remove Distractions

Silence the phone, log off email, remove Facebook pop-ups, mute your work chat. Now, set a timer and work undistracted. At the end of that time, check what you need to – emails, chat, etc. Do what works for you to focus on the single task for the allotted time.

Remember Your Mindfulness Exercises

Between tasks, get up, stretch, take deep breaths, go for a walk or listen to a guided breathing exercise, such as this.

4. Use Reminders and Alerts

Bullhorn Notifications - Eminent SEOEver driven home and realized you don’t remember the trip? Your brain was on autopilot. This is a state of low energy, one which is almost dreamy – very unmindful. In fact, the word mindful means to remember. Unfortunately, most people who see the benefits of mindfulness and even practice it  forget to be mindful!

Autopilot means you are not 100 percent present in the moment, and that you are barely aware that the moment is in front of you. You can’t be creative, plan or respond properly if you are operating on low power. You just can’t do it, Captain. You don’t have the power!

So let’s give you back the power! Try these tips:

  • Use alarms on your phone: Do this even if your phone is on vibrate so that it’s not driving your coworkers crazy.
  • Use your calendar: Set appointments with yourself.
  • Add some art: Keep a small note or a picture on your desk to remind you to be mindful.

5. Slow Down to Speed Up

Desk Clock - Eminent SEOI’m sure you’ve see the movie “Cars.” Doc Hudson tells Lightning McQueen he has to turn left to go right. Well, I am going to tell you to slow down to speed up.

Here is another way to look at it: You can no longer sleep; you need to work, because sleeping isn’t working and there is too much to do. So, just stop sleeping. After a while, you just don’t function any more and you are no longer living in the moment, but in the hallucinations of your sleep-deprived mind.

So, you can see how you need sleep to work, and sleep is rest. Rest is good. Your brain needs breaks to regroup and become more efficient.

That panicky rush to hit a deadline leads to mistakes, poor decisions and wasted energy. So, stop. Breathe deeply. Now, focus on listening. Walk, don’t run. And take your time to be mindful.

6. Stress is Your Friend … Really!

Stressing Out Wired - Eminent SEOIf you don’t think it is, you’d better change your mind! Researchers found that individuals with high stress who believed that stress was good for them had some of the lowest mortality rates. This is opposed to their stressed-out counterparts who believed stress would be the death of them – who also had the highest chance of dying. It’s what you put out into the universe!

So, if you are part of the second group, you should be going, “Holy cow, I gotta change my ways!” Mindfulness can help you change your views. When you encounter a stressful situation at work, take a moment to reflect on your reaction, your heart rate, your blood pressure, your attitude.

Having your pulse increase increases the oxygen in your blood, and gears you up for the challenge ahead. Treat it more like getting ready for an Ironman Challenge rather than the Dread Pirate Roberts. You aren’t going to your death: You are rising to the challenge and you will come out on top.

This change of view can LITERALLY add years to your life and improve your productivity in the workplace.

7. Adopt an Attitude of Gratitude

Businessman On The Clock - Eminent SEOHuman nature is not all unicorns and rainbows. We tend to dwell on the negative, the things going wrong. Repeatedly focusing on this will eventually cause you to develop a negative and unbalanced way of thinking.

To counter this, you must develop an attitude of gratitude. Find your silver lining, however small it may be. This will lead to more silver linings, which will give way to silver clouds and then blue skies. To get there, practicing mindfulness in all aspects of life and work helps improve your resilience to the downward spiral that is negativity.

Not happy at work? Find something to be thankful for – maybe your paycheck. It may not be the paycheck you would like, but it’s better than no check. And, I am sure you like at least one person there, one person who makes you smile. If nothing else, the job gives you insight into what you are looking for in a career – things you want and don’t want. So, be grateful for the experiences and lessons the job teaches.

8. More Humble, Less Grumble

Heart In Hand - Eminent SEOHumility comes from the Latin term humilis, meaning grounded. Please don’t go around tooting your own horn over and over. You did it, congratulations. People who make the most noise grabbing our attention is what society seems to live for, but in reality, a humble person is way more attractive.

Don’t confuse humility with meekness or timidity. They are in no way the same thing. To be humble doesn’t mean that you see yourself as inferior, but rather you are aware of your natural dependence and your equity in those around you.

Humility and mindfulness work very closely together. You can even say they are intimate. Mindfulness is accepting who you are and being open to listening and learning from those around you. You are grateful for them and the lessons they share. And someone who is grateful for others is also naturally humble.

Need a little humility in your life? Try these:

  • Practice your mindful exercises.
  • Spend a few minutes every day thanking those who have helped you – even if it is silent, in your heart or prayer.
  • Show appreciation: Say thank you!
  • Value other people’s opinions.

9. Like the Serenity Prayer, Accept What You Cannot Change

No Change - Eminent SEOThe core belief of mindfulness is to be present in the moment. If you cannot accept yourself as you are right now, then you have some work to do. Acceptance is the driving force behind mindfulness. It doesn’t mean resignation or giving up. You can change. Everything can change. But, right now, accept what is.

At work, if you missed a deadline, accept it. It came and went, and you weren’t ready. As soon as you accept that, you can come to a solution, talk to the team, learn from the mistake and move on. Acceptance leads to change.

Personal acceptance is infinitely more powerful. Embrace your shortcomings, weaknesses, strong points, aspects you do and don’t admire: They make you who you are. This acceptance will lead to confidence, clarity and joy. No longer will you be stuck with energy draining self-criticism, but you will have set the stage for greater peace of mind, productivity and mindful moments.

10. Think “Growth” in Everything

Rising Bar Chart - Eminent SEOA growth mindset changes the game from “this is all I got” to “I can do more.” People with a fixed mindset tend to believe that their intelligence and talents are stuck – never able to change. Meanwhile, people with a growth mindset believe that they can improve these qualities with effort. These people thrive on learning and trying new things, and they usually have success in the workplace because of this.

Mindfulness is about developing a growth mindset. It’s about giving full attention to the moment right now – with no judgments – and being open to new possibilities. Your new mindfulness outlook will make receiving negative reviews easier: You will see them as an opportunity to grow, instead of as an attack. You will be willing to take on new responsibilities and challenges because you will be curious to see how you can handle it all.

Mindfulness in the Workplace Can Bring About a New You

Through this mindfulness journey, you will discover new things about yourself, your work and your attitude. Take baby steps. Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor will you master mindfulness in one go.

Want to Learn More Tips on Boosting Productivity at Work Through Mindfulness?

Read Our Previous Blog Post on Mindfulness in the Workplace:
More Mindfulness Tips

10 Ways Social Media Can Help You Stand Out in the Job Search Process

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Social Media Can Help In Job Search Process - Eminent SEOWe live in an era of convenience where we have the ability to access information with the click of a button in a fraction of a second. Technology has allowed us to accomplish tasks and reach out to people we never thought was possible even 20 years ago.

Social media, in particular, is the beast that holds much power in our success or demise. It can single-handedly crumble a person’s reputation with a single tweet, or catapult a career with the sharing of a 20-second video. The bottom line is the user must navigate with savvy and caution.

Searching for the job you want can be exhausting. The whole process is time-consuming and impersonal, and it can difficult to show your full range of qualifications. Well, we’ve come up 10 ways you should leverage social media to stand out from the pack and look more desirable to potential employers while you’re in the job search phase.

1. Get On Board!

LinkedIn Most Popular Job Search Social Media - Eminent SEOLet’s start at the very beginning. If you do not have social media accounts and you are not close to retirement, get at least one now! LinkedIn is the most popular job search site, where an estimated 95 percent of recruiters search for candidates, and 79 percent of all employers hire based on contacts and referrals from this network.

Employers also look to social media sites like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter to get a more personal take on a candidate and make sure that they fit in with the culture of their company. They also look at candidates’ social profiles to gauge who might possess the type of character traits needed to thrive and be an asset for their team.

2. Maintain Your Account

Although keeping up with your social media accounts can be a job in itself, you need to do it! Don’t forget: You reap what you sow. You should set up a strong profile and use keywords that highlight skills that potential employers may search for.  As you develop new skills or complete certifications, let them know!

Potential employers want to see that you’re keep active on your profiles, but you don’t need to get overwhelmed trying to show your activity every single day on every single site. Just a little something every few days goes a long way.

3. Become a Social Butterfly

Like Share Comment Tweet Social Media - Eminent SEOIf you’ve spent any time on social media, you know how awkward it is to get a random “like” from someone you completely forgot you have a connection with. You know, the “creeper” who looks to see what everyone else is doing but never engages? Don’t be that guy! It’s social media, so don’t forget to be social!

Remember, you have a choice of what to entertain and engage in, so choose wisely. You don’t have to put your entire personal life out there just to be seen. In fact, that disposition has the potential to deter potential employers and only serves as a distraction. Instead, it’s best to like, share, comment, tweet and retweet relevant information in your field and follow sites that interest you professionally.

Get used to putting your name out there. The more you get your name in front of businesses, the more it’ll stick and show them that you are relevant and up to speed in the industry.

4. Use Discretion

As tempted as you may be to make a comment about certain political candidates or fire back at an internet troll, it’s usually in your best interest to refrain. By all means, be authentic, but if you desire to use social media as an avenue for potential employment, you must remember that once it’s out there, it stays out there. Photos, comments and posts can come back to haunt you with a vengeance, even if you delete them, so using the utmost discretion from the get-go will only help your cause.

Also, it’s important to be mindful of the persona you illustrate online. You may be someone who can compartmentalize your life and have a “work hard, play harder” mentality, but if “play” means posting pictures of you and your buddies passed out after a few rounds of beer pong, or you showing off your new bikini in a dressing room, you should just pass. Companies want someone who can represent them professionally at all times and not compromise their reputation. If you do post highly personal photos, you should keep your account private.

5. Make an Impact

You don’t have to filibuster your way through an interview to show that you have good ideas and can make an impact. Use your social media platform to gain followers by posting information that your audience will appreciate. Gaining followers will not only show employers that you have something to say and can influence the community, it will also give you the confidence to continue to make an impact, which can allow you to feel a sense of accomplishment.

6. Keep It Positive in the Job Search Process

It’s not easy being unemployed (or underemployed). It can take a toll on your self-confidence and your ability to land a new position, so why remind yourself of that?

You can rephrase your former employment status in your profile and avoid using the word “unemployed” and instead highlight what it is that you are looking for. Your profile will sound much more ambitious and will remind employers that they need you as much as you need them.

7. Read Between the Lines

Actually, employers are the ones that will read between the lines, so be sure to cross your T’s and dot your I’s. Literally. Using the correct punctuation and grammar on your page and in your comments will show your potential employer how well you actually communicate.

Everyone loves to highlight their “excellent written and verbal communication skills” on a resume, then fail to proofread a comment left on a company Facebook page or description paragraph on their profile. If you say you are great communicator, do not pick and choose when to be great. Make sure to stay consistent with whom you describe yourself to be.

8. Get Endorsed

Ask For Recommendations Endorsements - Eminent SEOSince LinkedIn is one of the top job search engines, it is important to get endorsements from other professionals within the network. Your connections are allowed to endorse you, or legitimize your skill set. You can ask former bosses or coworkers to write recommendations for you, and you can certainly return the favor.

Creating several symbiotic professional relationships online can only help you. The more high-quality references you can get, the better. These endorsements show employers that you’re not the only one that thinks you’re great, because there are others in your field that give you a stamp of approval.

9. Keep It Simple

We know … you have so many awesome qualities it’s hard to narrow it down. But you have to. Simplicity is key in a great professional social media page. Try to narrow down your descriptors to what you want employers to know.

You may think you are offering a way to get to know you better, but all the extra words only serve as a distraction. Get down to the essentials and stick with it. There will be plenty of other ways for potential employers to get to know you.

10. Dress for Success

This seems simple, but you’d be surprised at how many people fall short with this one. Now, it’s not necessary to wear a tuxedo or red carpet dress in every photo, but your attire should lean toward the conservative, business casual side.

Social media has become a place of validation in our society, and many users look for approval from others in the looks department. Professionally, it’s an entirely different ballgame. Again, be authentic and be yourself, but if ever in doubt, err on the side of caution.

The Payoff

If leveraged correctly, social media has the power to distinguish you from your competition without having to even step foot outside of your home. You can make yourself the most sought after in your field, or you can get lost in the shuffle of mediocrity: The choice is yours.

If social media overwhelms you, it’s OK. You don’t have to do it all. Simply pick whichever social site works for you and stick with it. Something is better than nothing, and as with almost anything else, you get out what you put in.

Team Eminent SEO

Eminent SEO provides strategic SEO campaigns with measurable results along with expert website design, development, pay per click, content and social media and organic website marketing. 800.871.4130.

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How to Inspire Employees to Become Leaders in Your Company

Leadership Team Meeting - Eminent SEO

You can build game rooms and throw all the free pizza at your employees that you want, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to be more invested in your company and that you’ll get the best work out of them. If employees feel like your company’s leadership is lacking and that they’re limited or stagnant in their roles, trouble (or at least turnover) lies ahead.

Lack of employee engagement is plaguing the U.S. workforce. A 2014 Gallup poll of more than 80,000 employed adults found that 51 percent were “not engaged” at work, and an additional 17.5 percent were “actively disengaged.” An Officevibe infographic from last year revealed that 75 percent of people who leave a job cite their bosses as a reason. Also, while 89 percent of employers think their former employees have left for more money, only 12 percent actually have done so.

On the bright side, companies that were found to have high employee engagement bring in 2.5 times more revenue than competitors who struggle to maintain their employees’ loyalty. Additionally, employees who are engaged in their roles were discovered to be 87 times less likely to leave their company than their disengaged colleagues.

Are you looking to foster a workplace environment that brings in more revenue and has a strong rate of employee retention? Of course you are. Therefore, start working on the strategies below in order to boost employee engagement:

Challenge Employees and Set Clear Goals

Employees that have something to work toward and are consistently challenged will stay engaged. Whether it’s seeing a project to completion or if there’s a promotion in store, employees like to consistently pursue goals of some form. Getting them bogged down with repetitive, unchallenging work that has no end in sight will have them yearning for the exit door, or, at least, it will be a waste of their talents.

Growth is crucial to keeping employees engaged. If they feel like the company is growing and that they can grow within the company, then you should have them locked in for the long term. When you set goals for each employee, try to make it a collaborative process. Get their input and then arrive at goals that are clear and challenging, yet reasonable.

Live out the Company Vision and Encourage a Strong Company Culture

Your company’s vision statement should inspire and motivate employees while also keeping them on track toward a common goal. If you’re trying to inspire them to embrace the corporate vision, you must do more than direct them; your management team has to lead by example. It will be nearly impossible for your employees to “buy in” if the leadership team doesn’t appear to practice what they preach.

On a related note, don’t forget to keep working on fostering a strong company culture, which could entail activities outside of work and at lunch. Leaders who take time to interact with employees apart from the normal business setting will help build workplace engagement. Volunteering is a great activity for team-building. Softball, bowling, golf or volleyball teams are also prime ways to get employees involved. Taking time to get to know employees on an individual level, while still giving them some distance, will only help to keep them engaged and committed to your company’s vision.

Transparency Is Key

Let employees know what’s going on with the company, such as what changes are in store, which obstacles and opportunities lie ahead and how the staff is doing in terms of reaching its goals. Meet with your staff on a regular basis, and set aside some time to review individual performances. The Officevibe infographic noted that 43 percent of highly engaged employees receive feedback at least once a week, whereas only 18 percent of disengaged workers get feedback that often.

Employees appreciate being in the loop, and when they are, they’ll start to get an idea of how all their work is starting to pay off. If they feel like what they do has an effect on how well the company performs, they’re going to be all that more invested and engaged. Eventually, they will start to act as leaders themselves, and they’ll be some of your biggest advocates in making sure the company grows and succeeds.

Keep Your Cool and Maintain Confidence

Even when your business is in a rough patch or you’re facing an unfamiliar predicament, keeping your cool and operating with confidence in every situation is going to be crucial to keeping employees from getting frazzled or anxious. You’re still learning and growing as they are, but you’ve got to model the demeanor necessary to face all challenges. You don’t have to sugar-coat everything (see “Transparency Is Key”), but you can always reiterate your belief in the company’s mission and that you all will pull out of any rough waters before long.

In Conclusion

If you model the qualities of a leader and you live by the company’s vision, you just might be cultivating a group of leaders in their own right. If that occurs, you can expect many of them to stick around with the company for years, and some will certainly grow into larger roles down the line. Invest some time in helping your employees grow professionally, and you’ll likely strengthen their allegiance and elicit their highest quality of work.

Andrew Gilstrap

Content Manager at Eminent SEO - I enjoy writing, editing and photography. I'm here to make YOUR website read better and rank better!

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Making the Most of Communication Technology

Making the Most of Communication Technology

Text messaging, online interaction and mobile media have already transformed the ways we communicate. The Pew Research Center reports that 56% of Americans now own smartphones. On an average day, 36.6 billion messages are sent via SMS-text message or chat apps like iMessage and WhatsApp. By 2014, that number is expected to surpass 50 billion messages. An increasing number of us spend most of our days using some form of electronic communication to manage workplace and personal relationships.

At the same time, few things can ruin a relationship faster than a miss-timed text or a message taken out of context. A report from Forbes, candidly entitled “Don’t Include Me On a Group Text Message Unless You’re Trying to Punish Me,” reminds us that the rules for proper e-communication etiquette are changing almost as quickly as the technology itself. Because communication technology holds such a prominent place in our daily lives, it’s more important than ever to consider how text messaging, email, and other mobile media are also changing how we build and maintain relationships.

The Upside

When it comes to the upside of communication technology, some of the most promising aspects involve improving collaboration and strengthening existing relationships. Initially, consumers are making good on professional and educational technologies that allow for increased collaboration. Three of the biggest providers of Cloud technology – Dropbox, iCloud, and SkyDrive – report a combined 675 million users. Google’s new(ish) Drive provides not only online storage, but also a platform for synchronous document editing across remote locations.

These types of technologies in addition to text messaging, instant messaging, and video-conferencing have created increased opportunities for convenient collaboration across time and space. In doing so, human communication experts argue that workplace relationships are strengthened in several key ways:

  • Co-workers develop close relationships that some describe are as comfortable as friendships. Text messaging, instant messaging and social networking at work allow employees convenience and efficiency in their communication, so these relationships develop rather quickly.
  • Employees also enjoy increased task interdependence, in that they can use communication technology to manage each other’s availability. When individuals are collaborating on a project, sometimes a quick text message or Google chat is appropriate to answer technical questions, without getting bogged down with the small talk that sometimes accompanies a face-to-face interaction.
  • Finally, employees often create a sense of community around their online collaborations. Communication technology simply brings more people to the table, allowing individuals to grow their social networks and online communities in ways previously limited by time and space. Such features are important in an expanding global marketplace.

These benefits of communication technologies are also evident in personal relationships. In an increasingly competitive and unpredictable economy, more families are living apart for employment purposes. This rise includes not only extended families, but also spouses and their children. As such, text messaging, videoconferencing, and mobile media are often vital technologies that families need to keep in touch. Additional benefits include:

  • A strengthening of existing relationships. Whereas text messaging is not always the most effective way to initiate and form a relationship, mobile communication devices help existing bonds stick together.
  • Combatting loneliness. One of the biggest risks that long-distance relationships face is loneliness, and videoconferencing, in particular, helps to alleviate the burdens of maintaining relationships across great distances.

The Downside

As more and more devices, programs, and platforms are developed, it is important to take a practical and somewhat cautiously optimistic approach to this topic – especially because of the downsides of our growing reliance on communication technologies. The drawbacks also focus on workplace and interpersonal relationship maintenance.

As workplaces become more connected and collaborative, there is a growing concern among organizational scholars that we’re becoming too plugged in. Employees are expected to do more with fewer resources, a phenomenon that Communication scholar Sharon Kleinman called the “culture of efficiency.” Communication technologies are a part of this culture, because they are believed to help speed up several of our workplace interactions. However, there are consequences for this emphasis on efficiency. Colleagues have grown to expect immediate responses to a text message. Employees are expected to respond to emails and text messages after work hours. These changes in communication practices also place significant burdens on workplace relationships.

  • Managers and supervisors now assume that their employees are “always on.” This can lead to work-family spillover, where individuals take time away from their personal relationships to deal with their workplace relationships – often without compensation.
  • The assumption of “always on” also increases the likelihood for employee burnout or other productivity problems – especially when individuals spend more and more of their days answering text messages and emails than doing the work that they’ve been hired to do.
  • Finally, if communication technologies have made workplace relationships more like friendships, then missing a text or failing to respond to an email immediately can prompt a much harsher reaction from our co-workers.

The workplace is not the only space where communication technologies often make our relationships more challenging. On an interpersonal level, text messaging, email, and videoconferencing do keep us more connected; however, they are not a magical fix for all relationship maintenance problems. Psychology Professor Mark Becker from Michigan State has argued that media multi-tasking, or using multiple communication technologies at once, is directly linked to increases in anxiety and depression. Communication scholar Lisa Stafford outlines some additional downsides that we might encounter when it comes to communication technology and personal relationships:

  • A loss of privacy and control. Individuals have little control over the texts or emails that they send, pictures that they post, or other communications that they put on the Internet. Those messages can be forwarded by well-meaning friends or family members in ways that the original sender never intended.
  • Paradox of constant connection. Text messaging can help romantic partners stay close even when they are apart; however, some partners get annoyed when their significant other interrupts them during work or time with their friends.

Developing Your Tech Etiquette

When it comes to managing the upsides and downsides of communication technology, there is no lack of tips for text messaging or rules for relationships. The most important lesson, however, is to develop your own tech etiquette. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Be mindful with your messages. In other words, think before you text. Think about how and when the person on the other end will receive your message, as well as any follow-up messages (e.g., be wary of tech features like group messaging, because they often lead to unnecessary disruptions in the receiver’s day).
  • Take safety seriously. No matter how good your privacy settings are, if you don’t want something public, then don’t post it to the Internet. Additionally, be careful mixing your work and home texts. The Supreme Court has ruled that your employer has the right to view any text messages sent from a work phone – no matter how private you think they are.
  • Formality is ok. LOL, SMH, and other abbreviated text-speak are not for everyone – there is nothing more awkward than a well-meaning grandmother who thinks LOL means lots of love. Chat apps like iMessage and WhatsApp have taken over the market from SMS text messaging, meaning that text messengers can now squeeze in many more characters in a single text. And it’s ok – preferred even, when it comes to business and professional settings – to ditch the text-speak and start using full sentences and proper grammar.
  • Turn it off. Give your brain, your anxiety levels, and your ego a break and turn off the technology every once in a while. The world will go on if you miss a text message. Some industry professionals even suggest declaring “email bankruptcy,” (e.g., kicking up your out-of-office notification to tell senders to re-send their message next week, because you’re not reading anything this week). It’s more important for you to pay attention to other relationship maintenance practices that get lost when we rely on too much technology. Balancing our use of technology with other forms of communication – like a good old face-to-face conversation – is an important part of managing healthy relationships.

How do you think communication technology has changed your relationships?

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This Article was written by Marianne LeGreco, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her research focuses on organizational and health communication, and she has published research on using communication technology to assist with community-based initiatives.

Team Eminent SEO

Eminent SEO provides strategic SEO campaigns with measurable results along with expert website design, development, pay per click, content and social media and organic website marketing. 800.871.4130.

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The Diet Food Misinformation Age

Hello ESEO Fans!

You know that we taDried fruit is badke care of you in every way that we can and with this post we want to highlight a major concern most of you planted at a desk daily deal with…….

“HOW DO I SIT ALL DAY AT WORK AND NOT GAIN WEIGHT?”

Well the answer is simple if you can find the time and discipline to exercise and eat right in your daily routine. Yes, I know that is VERY easy to say (type) and not so easy to do (de-butter). While you may not be able to find the time to do what you would like for yourself, you can avoid certain foods. That’s ideally the best place to start because you can’t exercise your way out of poor nutrition. Yes you know to avoid Cheetos (mmmmm) and soda, so we are going to take some time to tell you about a few foods you probably didn’t know to avoid.

Juice From Concentrate

There was a time when we were informed that orange juice was good for you and we all need a glass every morning. Nowadays things have changed quite a bit and we have gone past the information age and into the age of MISINFORMATION. Concentrated fruit juice has been filtered and extracted to make its form easier to store and ship while greatly extending the shelf life. During the filtration process chemicals and byproducts are added and subtracted to get the condensed version. This new “juice” has lost many of the vitamins and nutrients that made it the healthy choice it was before and worse yet been given additives to maintain the desired color and taste. What’s left is a glass of concentrated sugar water and food coloring that goes straight to your belly. Get natural juices, not from concentrate, which won’t spike your blood sugar to unnatural levels fooling your body in to thinking it needs to increase fat storage.

Soy Products

It has been touted for years that soy is nearly the perfect health food, again proving that MISINFORMATION is the norm. Over 90% of the soy beans from the United States are genetically modified and can cause a host of issues. Malnutrition, immune system breakdown, infertility, heart disease …… the list goes on and on. Everyone knows that genetically tampered foods are bad but even organically grown soy is full of anti-nutrients. The anti-nutrients in soymilk are soyatoxin, phytates, saponin, trypsin inhibitors, phytoestrogens and goitrogens. These all have adverse effects in the long term but there is also an immediate response your body has by releasing the “Hunger Hormone” Ghrelin. When you’re body needs nourishment it releases this hormone which affects the pleasure seeking region of the brain making you crave high calorie foods. Naturally Ghrelin levels fall when food hits your intestines and your body releases Leptin which in turn decreases your appetite and promotes calorie burning. The unfermented soy we consume increases Ghrelin levels making you feel the urge to eat even when you’re full while also diminishing your ability to burn calories.

Whole Wheat Breads

On your next trip to the grocery store look and notice that if wheat is added to any random item it’s highlighted and labeled as a healthy “Whole Wheat” MISINFORMATION product. Before you get those Whole Wheat Nutter Butters let’s think about how these could possibly be healthier. The gluten we get from modern wheat is completely different in structure due to decades of hybridization and selective breeding. The Glycemic Index (GI), which compares our blood sugar effects of carbohydrates, tells us that whole wheat will increase blood glucose more than pure sugar. So eating two slices of wheat bread isn’t so different than having a Snickers bar when you consider the sugar spikes. To add to that wheat is high in amylopectin A and gliadin which is converted to glucose faster than any other carbs and is also an appetite stimulant that can cause prolonged hunger feelings. When people quit eating whole wheat they typically eat 400 fewer calories a day because of the reduced exposure.

Fat Free Flavored Yogurt

Don’t fall for this major MISINFORMATION campaign. Fat free food isn’t health food because fat doesn’t make you fat, sugar makes you fat. Those convenient little yogurt packs contain 15 grams of sugar and it’s usually High Fructose Corn Syrup sweetener. So eating these puts food in your body that 95% of it you can’t do anything with except convert to fat and nearly all the rest is waste. Toss these out and replace them with plain Greek yogurt and add your own fresh fruits and/or honey. Even the flavored yogurts with fruit chunks in them are packed with preservatives and sweeteners to extend the shelf life that in turn extend your waistline. Don’t let the bad information steer you away from real organic full-fat plain yogurt which is packed with positive affects when consumed in its healthier form.

Let’s Get Started on not Getting Incorrectly Started

So we just scratched the surface on some of the foods you should avoid and there are likely many, many others you may not know of. Margarine, dried fruit, trail mix, reduced fat peanut butter, veggie omelets, granola bars, sushi rolls and “Organic” snack foods are all out there and these foods are just some more examples of food that we are given MISINFORMATION on routinely. If you spend some time researching online before you make diet changes you won’t have to ask yourself “Why am I still gaining weight after switching to eating the healthy stuff?”.

P.S. If you want to read more on healthy living, check out our Eminent Healthy Living blog.

A Note From the CEO…

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