I have come to the conclusion that when you purchase a new cell phone, a cell-phone etiquette guide should be included. Just because you have a phone that you can use everywhere and anywhere, doesn’t actually mean you should use it everywhere and anywhere. Stay tuned for a summary of the most irritating cell phone habits and how you can correct them.
Can you text with your eyes closed? Do you find yourself sending professional emails using text slang? Does your cell phone bill list your monthly text messages in the thousands, ten-thousands or more? Yes, my friend; you would be considered an excessive texter. Is it truly necessary for your friends to have play-by-play updates of your day? I assure you, the answer is no. While you are busy texting away, you are missing precious minutes, or in your case, hours of your life. If you find yourself texting during business meetings, social gatherings, family dinners, it is time to consider taking a step away from your phone. Texting can be a great way to keep in touch, don’t misunderstand me. Imagine how your friend feels, as she visits with you, and you keep sending text messages every two minutes. I imagine your friend would begin to get annoyed! The problem is that some of us are so wrapped up in the conversations on our phone screen that we neglect the ones we could be having in person.
Private phone conversations in public places.
Is the world your own private phone booth? Are you such a busy person that this conversation cannot wait until you reach a more private location? This is by far one of the most annoying habits of cell phone users! It is not appropriate to talk about your Vegas nightclub experience on an elevator at work with a Senior VP onboard. A public bus, an elevator, the local ‘greasy spoon’ are all great examples of public places where private conversations should not occur. If you do not want people listening in on your private phone conversations, an excellent suggestion would be wait to have the conversation until you are in a private location.
I remember staring at a woman on a bus as she was rambling, clearly having an indepth conversation with a seemingly invisible person. I wondered to myself, “Is she talking to herself?!”. Then I noticed the Bluetooth poking out of her ear. Honestly people, handsfree devices such as the Bluetooth have a great purpose: they allow you to have access to your phone while driving safely. Clearly this was not the case with the woman on the bus. Abusers of the Bluetooth, I ask you respectfully: Do you need to have your device surgically removed from your ear? If you are not driving, please take out your Bluetooth, lest, of course, you want people staring at you when you talk on the phone.
Smart Phone “Check-Ins”
One of the more recent annoyances of cell phone users would be the Smart Phone “Check-Ins”. If you are a member of a social networking site, you have seen comments on the wall feed such as “Bob Smith just checked in at Target”. Now think about it: you are letting the world know that you are not at home. An untrustworthy person could use this information to their advantage. Do you really want the world to know where you are every second of your life? I sure don’t! A reasonable suggestion would be, don’t post all your business for the world to see. Reintroduce a sense of mystery to your life. Above all, no one needs to know where you are at all times; and for safety reasons, I would certainly avoid the “Check In” option on your cell phone.
Have you ever noticed what happens when someone can’t reach you on your house phone? Less than 30 seconds later your cell phone is ringing from the same caller. If it is an inopportune moment, you would hit the ignore button. Another 30 seconds later your phone is vibrating, indicating that a voicemail has been received. With all intention of checking the message and calling the person back later, you go back to your work- only to be interrupted again to a text message that demands “Why don’t you ever answer your phone?!” Impatience has become a real problem to our generation. We are used to having all our contacts at our fingertips, when we don’t hear back right away, we panic. The best suggestion I have for culprits of this irritating cell phone habit: Relax. The person will call you back when they can. It doesn’t mean you are being ignored; it just means the person is busy. Use common sense, relax and the rest will fall into place.