We all know how bad it is to continuously stare at our computer screens. In this day and age computers form an essential part of the workspace and instead of avoiding the screens we should take some precautionary steps. In this article, we will walk you through a handful of apps that remind you to take a break from computer screens.
Why should you take a break from the computer
Most of us might be wondering why we need to take a break from the computer screen. To begin with, our eyes are not used to staring at an artificial source of light for long. Moreover increased use of computers and smartphones has been linked to Digital Eye Strain. That apart research has also found out that unchecked computer screen usage will have a direct effect on physical and mental health as well. So below are a few reasons why you should take a break from computer screens,
- Avoid Digital Eye Strain
- Stay Productive
- Improves body posture
- Help stay healthy
- Helps prevent injuries in the hands, arms, and neck.
Free tools to help you take a break from Computer screens
Outstanding is a web app that is aimed at helping you take a break from computer screens. This is a free web app and can be used on any platforms and accessed via a web browser. Once you head over to the website, you can choose the reminder interval. Furthermore, one can also set how long you should stand up. In other words, Outstanding helps you in getting up at regular intervals and not spend too much time on the office chair.
The web app works by beaming notifications via your web browser. If you are on a lookout for a simplistic reminder tool than the Outstanding fits the bill. You can download it here.
Stretchly is a comprehensive tool that offers multiple features. Stretchly offers features that help you take micro-breaks and long breaks. I like the way in which you can control your breaks. The app lets you skip the break or push it to the next available slot. The microbreaks are spread across a frequency of 10 minutes, and the app advises you to stretch your body before slipping back into work mode.
The app is open source and cross-platform. Furthermore, the app also lets you choose between different tunes for reminders. Overall a good tool that helps schedule micro breaks and freshens up your mind.
Breaker is a Windows software that helps you take a break from the computer screen and prevent health complications. DDV Breaker is mainly meant for those who heavily work on computers and tend to forget taking breaks within working hours. The program is equipped with two timers, one for your work time and the other for your break time. When your working hours are completed, Breaker announces you and starts the break timer.
4. Micro Breaks
Micro Breaks is yet another Chrome extension that promises to be better than the other Standup reminders. Firstly, Micro Breaks also includes healthy habits that will help you become more productive. The breathing feature is aimed at helping reduce stress, and this program extends for 2 minutes and spread across 2 hours.
We have all heard about the 20/20/20 rule, but how many of us do follow this? The Micro Breaks reminds you to stick to the 20/20/20 rule and pushes you to look at an object that is at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds and repeat the same exercise once every 20 minutes.
Needless to say Micro Breaks also allows you to customize the breaks. For me, the 20/20/20 rule works best when I look at greenery across my workplace. You can download the Micro Breaks Chrome extension from here.
5. Tomato Timer
Pomodoro technique is a time management technique that uses procedural steps to break the tasks into smaller parts. This technique is based on the fundamentals of planning, tracking, recording, processing and visualizing. Tomato Timer is one such app that is based on Pomodoro technique.
Tomato Timer is a web app and offers various functionalities like customization of audio alerts, and an ability to set the work/break times. You can use Tomato Timer from here.
Work Rave is another similar tools that may interest you.
Read next: How to sit in front of the computer.