I remember my aunt and uncle had a car phone in the 1980’s. They were rare. They were expensive. And they were a novelty. At that time in my life, I was too shy to call my friends’ houses- for fear that someone other than them would answer the phone! My, how times have changed!
Now, home phones are starting to go the way of the dodo bird. Everyone has a cell phone is seems, even down to elementary school students! And cell phone stores dot every corner. Leaving home and forgetting your phone can send your entire day into orbit. And having a phone that drops calls or doesn’t deliver your messages on time is an outrage!
Yes, like everyone else, I do take my phone with me almost everywhere. I receive calls and texts and the like. I also receive laughs and stares because my cell phone is five years old. Yes- that’s right. It’s old. And- I can’t get email or the internet on my phone. And I like it that way.
Everywhere around me, people are checking their phones. We have ad campaigns everywhere promoting not texting and driving. There are reminders in doctor’s offices, bank teller lines, and movie theaters to turn off your phone. As soon as an airplane lands, people immediately check their phones. Yes, we are a cell phone oriented society.
No matter how wonderfully convenient and addicted we may be to the convenience and necessity of cell phones, is your cell phone driving you nuts? I can’t tell you how many people I know personally or via cyber space who have expressed stress and frustration from their phones! See how many questions you can answer “Yes” to below:
- Does your phone wake you up at least three times at some point during the week from a text, email or call?
- Does your phone “ding” every time someone posts on your Facebook wall, sends you a text or photo, or you receive an email in any one of your three accounts?
- Do you have to re-charge your cell phone battery throughout the day because it runs down due to usage?
- Do you walk away from your phone for an hour, only to come back to find several missed calls among texts and emails?
- Do you go to a social function and spend more time communicating with others via your phone than through face to face communication?
- Does your phone interrupt you during family dinner time, conversations with your children, intimate moments with your partner, or during significant life events?
- Do you find yourself rolling your eyes or feel a sense of dread and aggravation set in when certain ring tones go off or the phone rings at all?
If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, here are some tips that may help you find some peace and relief from that little monster of interruption:
- Try putting your phone on vibrate or silent for certain periods of the day so you can focus on work that needs to be done.
- Get in the habit of not answering the phone every time it rings. If they really want to talk to you, they’ll still want to talk with you a bit later, too. Just make sure to follow up with them in a timely manner (or send them an email or text to tell them that you’ll follow up at a later time) or they may keep calling you until you do answer.
- Let people who frequently call you know the best times to reach you or suggest other ways to contact you.
- Turn your phone to silent or vibrate at a specific time every night to allow for family time, time with your partner, and sleep. Others will gradually learn not to contact you during those times.
- Try disconnecting your email from automatically chiming on your phone every time you receive a new notification.
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