Do you often put in long hours on the job? It may be good for your career, but it’s bad for your heart. In honor of National Workaholics Day (seriously!) on July 5, let's take a look at this British study that says working more than 11 hours a day can increase the risk of heart attacks.
Research released from the University College London shows a 67 percent increase in the risk of heart attacks for employees who work more than the recommended 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. days, and it’s a real wake-up call for people who have trouble “turning off.”
As Daily Defenders of Good Karma, we here at DH already have a set of Karmic Laws that apply to this very topic: Working so much is in violation of Karmic Law No. 8: Give It a Rest.” In fact, just recently we reported on a related topic about how using technology within an hour of bedtime can interfere with getting enough sleep, which is also bad for your heath.
With so much evidence to support taking breaks from the stress that comes with work and technology, what can you do to force yourself to put down your smartphone, turn off your laptop and take a breather?
Just as Karmic Law 8 details, start by creating some boundaries and taking a technology Sabbath. We already recommend setting aside at least one day each week when you won’t allow electronic devices or media into your daily routine, but in light of this new health news we also recommend applying the same boundaries to your daily work routine.
Tips? Resist being a slave to your phone or voicemail -- schedule times during the day to check both, and in between GIVE IT A REST. Take a lunch break every day, no matter how busy you are -- even a half hour unplugged will do wonders for your spirit. Ask yourself what you can do tomorrow if it gives you more time to breathe today.
Finally, when you do go home at the end of the day, insist on an hour in which you avoid TV, radio and Internet. Unplug your phone and laptop and use the time to read, meditate, sketch, journal, draw or exercise. And please don’t take your laptop or phone to bed with you.
Trust us, your career will still be there when you plug back in, and you’ll likely be a better employee if you’re rested, healthy and re-charged.
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