The ROI of a good smoke detector

De ROI van een goede rookmelder


In February 2019, the same headline made the news twice in quick succession: house burned down due to charging a battery at night. My attention was immediately drawn, because, just like the radio DJ who discussed it after the news broadcast, this was also an everyday – uhm, all-nightly – occurrence for me. As with so many people, my last feat of the day is usually plugging my mobile phone (plus laptop, tablet, power bank, and what not) into the mains until the next morning, when the display shows a nice green ‘fully charged’ bar. Apparently, this can lead to rather explosive nights with a burned-out house as a result.

Hey mister DJ

The radio DJ rattled on about all the possible harmful consequences of night-time charging and uttered the inspiring words: “Don’t make the capital mistake many people make by putting your mobile phone next to your bed to charge at night.” Apparently, we go to sleep with the conviction that the smell of burning will wake us when our bedside table starts to smoulder. But nothing could be further from the truth. During your sleep, your brain switches off your olfactory organ, meaning that you won’t be able to detect the smell of smoke. So, it’s much safer to charge your devices during the day and grant them a good night’s sleep instead, in full ‘off’ mode. Or, if you continue to insist on charging your devices at night, invest in good smoke detectors. They don’t have to cost much and can save lives.

Our grey matter

This story immediately made me think of the devicein my brain pan! And how we, just like our house, don’t provide our brain with the necessary guarantees to ensure its good health. How does this relate to your situation?

In my previous life, I needed to stay vigilant not to head in the same direction as the charging behaviour I had adopted for my mobile phone. I use my brain all day long. All nice and fine when my grey cells process every impulse fast enough to my liking; but often frustrating, because they tend to overheat and fritz out just when I’m facing critical moments in life.

Always ‘on’

During the day, our brains hardly get a minute’s rest. They jump from processing one impulse to welcoming the next distraction, forever onwards to a new deadline. By anxiously keeping an eye on the battery light, we don’t save on screen time, on the contrary, we add to it under the motto: recharging is something we’ll do tonight, now it’s all about keeping at it.

And if do you already own a smoke detector, you must above all skilfully ignore its chirping alarm and seek solace in orthodontic vocabulary: just grit your teeth and get on with it. Some even resort to dentures to be able to meet (imaginary?) expectations set out by God knows who.

Time to recharge

And when we finally land on our bed at night, dead tired, are we not copy-catting people suffering from nocturnal anosmia? After all, we do take our mobile phone with us in the bedroom. It could very well treat us to a one-way ticket to burn-out, inconspicuously and unconsciously.

So, if you don’t want your house or your body to burn out, you should perhaps follow these golden rules to safely charge your devices in the broadest sense of the word:

  1. Don’t let the battery run out completely, and also charge during the day.
  2. Ban your mobile phone from your bedroom.
  3. Grant all your devices– including your brain and body, yes! – genuine ‘off’ time and treat them to a good night’s rest.
  4. Invest in quality smoke detectors.
  5. Learn to listen to those smoke detectors and react correctly when they go off.

PS1: Smoke detectors can also save lives in your company! Avoid burn-out and invest in quality prevention. Tryangle will be happy to help you.


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