Can Computers Cause Stress?


Every now and then we all have computer problems. It’s a bummer. You can’t get onto the Internet and you need to do that ASAP. Sometimes, the screen gets all wiggly or gives you a message that it is shutting down and you scream, ’NOOO,  I didn’t save what I finished yet – wait!  Aghhhh.  Why didn’t I save it?”  Bang head against computer.  It may turn it on again, or you may have created a more serious computer problem.

We all know how we feel when we can’t get to a site we need to right away OR you have someone on the phone–and the computer, for the first time in weeks, decides to s-l-o-w-l-y — t-u-r-n   o-n and slug along while someone is waiting on the other end tapping his or her fingers while you say the now old cliche, ‘my computer is really slow today.’  Not fun for your nimble fingers itching and ready to pound the keys that won’t let them. Is the server down? or is the system having problems?  The views are not working right? — #@%?>#






What do you do when these problems come up at work and the administrators are trying their best to fix them? They know and hear that the user is getting mighty frustrated. Here are some tips & suggestions for those days when this inevitably happens to everyone.

1.  DON’T vent your frustrations out on on the Help Desk employees. They are trying their best to fix it.  Word will get around how unreasonable  you are — yes, they will say that  — not to mention that probably your boss is hearing about it.  In the scheme of proper and improper behavior, let’s not ‘bite the hand that feeds you’ and/or ‘don’t air dirty laundry’ about how incompetent the Help Desk is to the nearby personnel. They may be amused at first, but that gets old quick.   The Help Desk won’t be amused.

2.  Try to be patient. No one likes to have to wait for things or not be told what is going on. When things aren’t quite up to par technically,  some of you want to hit the Panic Button, and do;   Others wait patiently for the air to clear and haven’t said a word.  Shalom.  It is duly noticed by others in your group how you react under stress.

3 . Read any article that explains systems problems, especially those dealing with adding on servers and LAN’s and how traffic is intricate and inter-related. You will see that they take time to develop, time to test and time to implement. Plus, it takes time to get the bugs out.  We all know about bugs; we’ve all had them – the computer kind, that is.

4.  Try to imagine the worst thing that could happen – like your company could put you totally in the dark, and you could get ERROR messages on everything that is out there. All of your reports and work articles could be frozen out there somewhere forever.  They may not be backed up and lost forever.   See, things could be worse.  If you can get some screens, although that isn’t warm and fuzzy, it should be somewhat comforting.






5.  While you’re pounding the keys harder than what they were made for, remember that you have the advantage of having a job and it is usually OK – except when the server is not working right?  Yes, I do hear you and validate you – you sure know some really bad words — normally, you do like what you are doing.  Come on, admit it, or you wouldn’t be so frustrated. That’s better.  Now try to smile a little.  Come on – that’s a smile?  All right, forget about it.

6. Do not give in to the urge to sweep the computer off the desk onto the floor.  Big mistake.  Think of something pleasant instead.  You can if you try.  Or go for a walk.

7. Stop putting even  more phone messages on the Help Desk line.  They’ve already been inundated with questions asked and re-asked.  Breathe in and out.

8.  You look better.  Uh Oh, your eyebrows are knitting together again.  Relax.  Think happy thoughts; remember, you’ll make up this time   Somehow, Somewhere, Sometime.   Isn’t that a Barbra Streisand song?   Oh, come on, that was a joke – stop throwing things.

9.  Whoops, you’re pounding away again – not good for the keyboard.   And another call to the Help Desk — tsk tsk.   You already ‘aired’ that annoyance twice already. Stop calling them.  Yes, Stop.

Oh, look, the system is up now.   And they have fixed all the glitches.

Now, admit it — wasn’t it kind of nice to take a little break?  OK, OK, I’m going.




(C) Marie Coppola  Revised August 2018