Real Simple and The Huffington Post conducted a joint poll that asked more than 3,500 women how they find balance in an increasingly wired world. Unveiled today on RealSimple.com and The Huffington Post’s Screen Sense section and in the January issue of Real Simple, a special themed issue of the magazine dedicated entirely to life balance, the results of the 25-question survey found that women are ambivalent about the role mobile devices and social media play in their lives.
Of the women polled, 47 percent keep their smartphones on their nightstands overnight so that they can check them first thing in the morning, and 5 percent of respondents sleep with their phones in their beds. During dinner, 56 percent of women keep their smartphones close enough to hear and 12 percent set them on the table. Seventy-six percent check their smartphones at least once an hour, and of those women, almost half sneak a peek every 15 minutes (or even more frequently), but only 27 percent of respondents say that they are addicted to their digital devices.
“Technology can help simplify our lives, but it also places additional demands on our time,” said Kristin van Ogtrop, Editor of Real Simple. “As technology and social media become staples of our everyday lives, women are faced with the new challenge of how to regulate their use and avoid letting their smartphones control them.”
Women have conflicting feelings when it comes to social media. When asked to choose from a selection of phrases describing how social media has changed their lives, respondents were evenly divided between positive and negative sentiments. They were allowed to choose multiple options, with the most popular selections stating that their lives are “more social” (17 percent), “more unproductive” (16 percent), “more interesting” (15 percent), and “more cluttered” (13 percent).While social media has proven to be both a help and a hindrance, the most popular answers regarding how respondents feel while using social media were “entertained” (19 percent), “informed” (19 percent), and “connected” (19 percent).
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