My month of no texting in February is just about over. As I last reported, my goal changed from no-texting to limited-texting. Since making the change, a lesson I’ve learned is, the ability to say “no!”
We live in a society that loves to please others, even to a fault. Our texting communication is no different. Think about it, how often do we feel compelled or obligated to respond to someone’s text message? In contrast, how did you feel the last time you put off your reply to someone? How anxious were you? If so, then why do we place so much emphasis on texting? All of these questions beg this question: How can we then eliminate these negative emotions? How about saying, No!?”
Saying “no” is a lost art for our society. Personally, as I still struggle with determining who to say “no.” As I prioritize the text messages, I receive, I too am anxious. Still, I have learned to say “no” in a variety of ways:
1. I Don’t Respond To Every Text. – Some people may see this as “rude” but as I stated in a prior post, “if it’s that serious then make a call.” In fact, what’s even ruder is when we ignore the person in the room talking to us because we are obsessed with our phones. Admittedly, I recently caught myself doing this to a family member. So while I seek to filter the texts I respond to, I realize there is room for improvement.
2. I Call People. – Often when people text me, I’ll just call them in return. This approach applies to social media too. For example, a friend and I were recently debating a topic on Twitter. After two tweets I asked him to call me, which he did. As we spoke, it was a pleasant discussion that displays how a phone call is better than text communication.
3. Using Do Not Disturb Functions. – Sadly some people have not respected my desire to limit my texts and persisted in texting me anyway. However, the Do Not Disturb feature allows me to mute both their texts and a group text so I can limit the noise.
As I wrap this post, I have loved this experiment. I’ve become more relational, productive, and creative. Each of these trade-offs and more are worth the effort to limit my texting.
Still, I realize to some who read this link may fail to see the value. I get it; even I question my experiment. However, sometimes we don’t understand until we’ve experienced it. Therefore, try then this experiment. Do a month, a week, or even a day; but try it. I believe you will see the value in the test that will lead to further productivity, creativity, and renewed relationships. Together then, let’s strive for better communication.