Mobile phones can be incredibly useful gadgets. We use them to keep in touch with loved ones, call for a taxi late at night, check our emails and Facebook profiles, and, of course, send text messages to friends and acquaintances. But as useful as a mobile phone is in modern life, there is a right way and a wrong way to use a mobile phone, and if you get it wrong, you risk annoying other people.
Bad Mobile Habits
In days of old, phones were inside boxes on the street or in a discrete corner of the home, so if you had a conversation, it would more often than not remain private. With the advent of mobile phones, however, privacy soon became a thing of the past and now people think nothing of engaging in highly personal conversations in the middle of the supermarket aisle.
Turn the Volume Down
It isn’t always easy to hear a ringing mobile phone when there is a lot of background noise, and if you are expecting an important call, you might choose to turn the volume up nice and high. However, if you are sitting in a quiet place and your phone starts blaring out at full volume, don’t act surprised if other people find it intensely irritating. Consider others when you adjust your phone’s volume. Ask yourself if it really needs to be that loud.
Keep Your Voice Down
Be aware of others when you are chatting on your phone. Even though you are engrossed in a fascinating conversation about some scurrilous gossip, not everyone wants to hear all about it. And if your conversation is peppered with expletives and explicit content, try having it somewhere less public so as not to offend those of a sensitive disposition.
Don’t Use Your Phone in Company
Continually checking a mobile phone when in the company of others is just plain rude. So unless you are waiting for a critical text message or email, put your phone away for the time being and give your companions the attention they deserve. This particularly applies to romantic encounters and dates. Paying more attention to your mobile phone than your date is disrespectful, so if your date decides to ditch you in favour of someone more deserving, they would be completely justified.
Not at the Dinner Table
The whole point of sharing a meal with your family is to engage in conversation and enjoy some togetherness. Unfortunately, if everyone is distracted by their mobile phones, there is unlikely to be much in the way of meaningful conversation, which kind of defeats the purpose. Therefore, make a rule that states mobile phones are banned from the dinner table.
Not In Bed, Please
If you sleep alone, you are excused from this one, but if you share a bed with a partner, it is bad form to take your phone to bed and spend 20 minutes checking emails and social networking accounts instead of devoting some attention to the person lying beside you. And if they are too busy checking their phone to care, consider having relationship counselling sooner rather than later.