How Being Social is Being Rude
When was the last time you blatantly ignored your teacher, pastor, friends, family or boss by talking on your phone? I bet most of you would agree this would be extremely rude. The funny thing is, without even realizing it, most of you have done this—by texting. Just because typing is not disruptive, it doesn’t give us a free pass to be rude to those around us.
Now with so many social media sites swarming about you can now be Facebooking, Tweeting, Hearting, Pinning or Instagraming 24/7. Today, texting has become second nature in almost every situation imaginable. Whether it is work, school or everything in between, the majority of us will be texting away. Is this something that we can change? Even more important, do we want to change?
Statistics show that 95% of texters are between the ages of 18 and 29. Studies also show an average of 17 text messages are sent daily. While we have stopped talking on the phone with one another we are also slowly disengaging from speaking at all in our everyday lives. It has gotten much easier to ignore each other on public transportation, in an elevator, at a gathering and many other venues where interaction could occur.
About 30 states have made texting illegal while driving. But how do we cut back on texting in a professional, academic or social setting? At my school some teachers have a ‘no tolerance’ policy where if they catch you with a phone or hear it going off they deduct a percentage from your overall grade. Some may find this harsh. However, I can’t say having to go 80 minutes without looking at my cell phone made me a worse person. A ‘no tolerance’ policy may not catch everyone in the act and it may set off a rebellious vibe, but it’s possible once you become used to it, it may be nice not having a cell phone around.
Mainly we need to be more conscious of our surroundings, and we can’t attain this if we are glued to our phones. Life is beautiful and our friends, family and strangers have a lot to say that we won’t hear if we are worried about conversation only through what we can read. The next time you are being ignored, tell the offender. And the next time you realize that you are the offender, put the phone away. While we can’t control everyone we can at least control ourselves. One by one we can help each other to become more aware of our surroundings and our actions. Let’s not become a rude and insensitive generation.
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