The healthiest choice isn’t always an option. In Best Worst Choice, experts explain what you can do to make the most of those less-than-ideal situations.
Using your phone right when you wake up can make you more stressed then, and later—unless you do it strategically.
You tend to absorb the emotions you're surrounded by, says Pamela Rutledge, Ph.D., director of the Media Psychology Research Center in Newport Beach, California. If you read negative or upsetting articles and posts, you may adopt those feelings yourself. The effects can carry into the rest of your day, she notes.
Separately, by checking your email first thing, you allow work to intrude on your personal life. This can cause further stress and anxiety.
If you reach for your phone right when you wake up, use a mindfulness app or read uplifting newsfeeds or websites. This type of phone use can actually improve well-being, Rutledge says. Hold off until after you've had breakfast and coffee to scroll through news headlines, social media, and emails. If you can, wait until the start of the work day to check the latter.
The bottom line:
Making time for positive rituals in the morning can prevent tech-based stressors from having a lasting impact.