Sit back, relax, take stock

Even for someone like me who deliberately manages the time I spend on technology, I still spend an awful lot of time on it. Now don’t get me wrong, I’d be lost without my tech and apps, but once in a while it’s good for our health to take a break from the levels we use our gadgets at and assess how well they are working for us.

And it doesn’t have to be a long or arduous exercise.

So in celebration of the end of the financial year (and a week away in the sun), I’ve done a simple Digital Stocktake. The results are below.


  • Windows laptop x 1
  • Apple iPad x 1
  • Samsung Android Smartphone x 1
  • Amazon Kindle x 1

All working well – check.

All important data being backed up to cloud – check

All un-used accounts and apps closed and deleted – check.

Disaster Recovery Processes

I have a number of DR processes and risk management tools in place. And so it was with a little bit of glee that one of these was actually tested while I was away on holiday last week. No need to do a check – I validated it in a real-life scenario.

Whilst relaxing on a Fijian island last week, I lost my phone. Using my iPad I accessed my ‘find my Samsung’ account and voila, I had locked the phone in an instant and the family and I were off on our bikes a’ la The Goonies <Click here if you are too young to know who The Goonies are>.  and recovered it. With a happy ending, it was actually a lot of fun.

DR Processes in place and tested – check.

Time Management

Part of taking stock of your technology is assessing how you use it. As with everything, there’s time and then there’s quality time. While we were away in our Fijian paradise we did spend time on our gadgets, but the time we spent and consequently the moods and emotions we experienced were vastly different to our usual day-to-day activities. My son spent 2 hours on his iPad one day….reading…in a hammock…in the shade of a palm tree… if that’s not quality time, I don’t know what is.

So for my time management check, I noted down three days of tech usage, noting:

  • The time I spent on each of my gadgets
  • What I was doing on them
  • My mood whilst I was using them.

And I did this for three separate occasions:

  • When I was at work
  • During a normal weekend at home
  • On holiday.

What I found was that, despite my best efforts, I still spend too much time checking Social media and emails on my phone and iPad and not really seeing a lot of benefit from the experience. Interestingly, I’m much better disciplined on my laptop. So I’ve set myself a goal to reduce my social media time by half.

Time management reviewed and action plan created – check.

So that’s the results of my digital stocktake. What would yours look like?

P.S. You don’t need to go to Fiji to do it, but I thoroughly recommend it.



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