Author: W. Lyon 1
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  • 1 Oak Ridge National Laboratory Analytical Chemistry Division 37830 Oak Ridge Tennessee USA
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Technostress is a modern disease of adaptation caused by an inability to cope with the new computer technologies in a healthy manner. It manifests itself in two distinct but related ways: in the struggle to accept computer technology, and in the more specialized form of overidentification with computer technology. The primary symptom of those who are ambivalent, reluctant, or fearful of computers is anxiety. The primary symptom among those who have too fully identified with the computer technology is a loss of the capacity to feel and to relate to others. Signs of the technocentered state include a high degree of factual thinking, poor access to feelings, an insistence on efficiency and speed, a lack of empathy for others, and a low tolerance for the ambiquities of human behavior and communication. As its most serious, this form of technostress can cause aberrant and antisocial behavior and the inability to think intuitively and creatively. In some cases spouses report that their technostress partners began to view them as machines.