Technophobia? Or just technology anxiety

By John Mason

Whether you have technophobia or simply a mild fear of technology, you are not alone. Millions of people suffer right along with you. It’s understandable. Advances in technology are relentless and just thinking about it can feel completely overwhelming. While conducting research for this article, I read several opinion pieces and studies on the topic. They were all over the board in their findings and recommendations. So, I am going to draw on my 20+ years of technology experience, and provide you with a few things you can do to take back control and alleviate some of that anxiety!

Take a deep breath and relax – Clear your mind of any preconceived notions you may have about technology. Like a carpenter’s hammer, technology can be a great tool in your toolbelt. Over time, you will learn to master it.

Perspective – Technology was created by humans and is not beyond your personal comprehension. Draw on the confidence of other accomplishments in your life. You can do it!

Narrow your focus – Don’t try to conquer the entire technology landscape when there is no need. I recommend being concerned with only learning what you need to know right now.

Search Google like a pro – Be very specific with your Google searches. Sifting through pages of search results can lead to more anxiety. Give it a try by searching “tips and tricks” and “searching google”. You’ll find all sorts of ways to narrow your search results to just what you’re looking for.

Ask for help! – Friend, family, or technology expert. Find someone familiar with the technology. Why spin your wheels? I recommend writing down your findings and trying to execute the steps on your own. That way, you will remember how to do it next time.

Self-Teach – Take the time to learn about a specific technology. There are many inexpensive sites online to further your education (keep your focus narrow).

Remember, technology is there to help us, not torment us. It can make your life easier if you can get past the anxiety of using it. My tips may seem obvious, but even after all my years of working with technology, I personally employ these approaches when tackling something new. My hope is that implementing some or all these will help you as well.

John Mason is the manager of investment technologies and operations at Versant Capital Management, an independent wealth management and investment firm located in Phoenix, AZ.