When you are with someone, are you truly WITH them? What I mean is, are you physically present but distracted by your buzzing phone? Does your attention often drift away from the person you are sitting face to face with to go to someone that is on the other end of the text message or Facebook message?
You know where I’m going with this!
If this is you … don’t you think it’s time to unplug? It is different if you are by yourself and feel like checking every single message that comes across your phone. It is another thing entirely when you are in the presence of people and yet have your head stuck in your phone.
There have been times in the past where I have checked messages while in the presence of others if something was going on, such as a parade that we were attending with our horses in December. Although my family and I were out with a friend, I received an invitation for us to participate in the parade and needed to respond so they would know who all was interested. If we weren’t, they would need to ask others to participate instead. They were working on a time crunch and so I felt compelled to read and respond to the messages. Ordinarily, though, I try very hard not to get caught up in the technology trap when I’m in the presence of other people.
This past weekend we had a situation where the person was clearly addicted to their online activities and their phone. My daughter went to pick up a friend that was online playing games, and they asked her to wait while they finished their game.
She told me about this later, and I definitely had a problem with this. He made her wait … until he finished his online game.
But … that’s not all.
He did have the decency to put his phone away while we were at the table eating supper, but as soon as he finished eating, he whipped his phone out once more.
When we arrived at the house to put in a movie that HE mentioned that HE wanted to see, he sprawled out on my couch as comfy as he could be … with his phone in hand texting the ENTIRE TIME!
My daughter sat in the chair looking at him on his phone completely ignoring the movie she had playing FOR HIM. She even said she’d turn it off since he wasn’t interested in it, but he protested saying not to and to leave it on because it was really a good movie.
Again … WHAT?!
She felt completely ignored that night and as if the other person or people on the other end of the messages were more important than her. That just is not right!
Needless to say, at the end of the night when she took him home, she was very disappointed in how rude he was the ENTIRE TIME they were together.
No, they aren’t dating. They were just hanging out as friends, BUT STILL … he should have unplugged long enough to talk with her or watch the movie since he mentioned he’d like to see it.
Needless to say, my daughter will not be hanging out with this friend any time soon.
If you have found yourself caught up in online activities, check yourself and see if you need to just unplug for a little while. Those around you will greatly appreciate if you are fully present … body, mind, and spirit … and not just a lump sitting in a chair or sprawled out on the couch while we watch you give your thumbs a work out!
It’s something to think about the next time you reach for your phone in the presence of others. Is that text message, Facebook message, or ANY message really THAT important to take away from the person that you’re with at that moment in time?