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Technology Tips: December 2020 Edition Technology Tips: December 2020 Edition

Technology Tips: December 2020 Edition

by Skyward IT Services
Skyward IT Services Skyward IT Services Network and Infrastructure Security Specialists
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What is hygge?  

Hygge is a Nordic-inspired lifestyle of simplicity, coziness, and more of what matters. It is often referred to as the art of staying home. At a time where many of us live, work, learn, and relax in our homes, this mindful magic might be more impactful than ever before.  

If your goal is to maintain your happiness and mental health, then hygge is certainly for you. And while hygge typically encourages powering off electronics, we wanted to share nine ways that you can make technology work for you through setting thoughtful boundaries, making homey tasks easier, and connecting with people throughout the chilly months.  

 

Smart hygge home 

1) It’s difficult to feel relaxed when you are nervous about home security. Home break-ins can increase around the holidays (Home Alone, anyone?), so it is important that your home security systems (including Ring doorbells and Nest cameras) and Wi-Fi have ultra-secure passwords. If your Wi-Fi doesn’t have a password, or if it is too weak, hackers can break into it and disarm your security devices. 
 
2) If you are thinking about switching to smart lightbulbs, now would be a great time. You can dim them from your smartphone (or smart speaker!) and change the hue to warm or cool. As a bonus, you can add smart lightbulbs to your home security arsenal by turning them on from anywhere to make it *seem* like you are home while out of town. If smart light bulbs aren’t your first choice, turning off lights and using candles or a fireplace is the perfect hygge alternative.

3) No fireplace? No problem. Cast a video of a crackling fire on your TV and pour yourself a cup of something warm. Some other cozy tools to bring out: your electric blanket, heated neck cozies, and Crock-Pot for slow and easy meals. Play some relaxing music in the background, such as Spotify’s Hygge playlist. 

 

Using tech to connect 

1) Send a thoughtful email to someone letting them know you are thinking of them. Add stories, photos, and even a short video to really make it meaningful. The app 1 Second Every Day helps you capture daily one-second video highlights of you or your family. It turns those one-second clips into a sharable and fun video for you to email, post, and cherish for a lifetime.  

2) This holiday season Adobe Photoshop is offering free templates to create your own holiday cards to spread some cheer into the new year. Or, try a free service like Canva. A local print shop can help with professional printing, and your nearest USPS can send everything out. (Curious if Aunt Judy received your gift? Track your shipments, calculate shipping, and more in the USPS apps for Android and iOS)  

3) Looking for a contactless way to have your annual Secret Santa gift exchange? Elfster will randomly match up participants so that the organizer doesn’t have to. To make it even easier, you can add links to items on your list (whether local or a big box retailer)!

  

A cozier web experience 

1) Many organizations are familiar with online task managers, such as Trello, which help keep track of work projects and tasks. Outside of the office, task managers are a perfect tool to help busy families simplify their lives at home. Promote structure and harmony by having appointments, grocery lists, meal planning, due dates for bills, reminders, and even household chores and projects all in one location. You can view your whole month as a calendar, helping you visualize your schedule. This is also a great tool to help parents manage their child’s learn-from-home schedule! 

2) Organize your email inbox by deleting old messages, responding to timely ones, creating folders, and unsubscribing to newsletters that are no longer useful (we hope not this one!). A great tactic for staying on top of your inbox each day is with the FAST system–after you read a message, decide whether you’d like to File it, Assign it to someone, Store it for future reference, or Trash it.  

3) Declutter social media accounts by unfollowing or unfriending those who promote negativity. The media and messages we regularly consume affect our conscious and subconscious self, so it is crucial that positivity is filling our minds (particularly now). Unfollowing on Facebook or muting someone on Instagram or Twitter allows you to continue your connection, but their content will be hidden from your news feed. This is a great option to avoid hard feelings if you aren't yet able to end a digital connection. 


From our team to yours, we wish you and yours a safe and enjoyable hygge season!

 


Skyward IT Services Skyward IT Services Network and Infrastructure Security Specialists


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