Cellphones definitely changed the way people interact with each other. The immediacy of text messages makes conversations easier. Read receipts and text bubbles make it known whether someone has seen the message. We expect immediate responses because it is so easy now, but it highly disrupts the work-life balance.
I had a breakdown first semester with my first group project in college. I would reply immediately to group plans and any changes. Meanwhile, one group mate, in particular, bailed on the production date, leaving me without a camera, and then, had the audacity to make me change my part of the project she never properly explained to me herself just as I was about to go to sleep the night before it's due.
I called my dad in tears and he said, "Professionally, you'd tell her you're going to sleep and will fix it tomorrow." He had a point, but I knew dragging this project out wouldn't improve anything and cause more drama, so I fixed the documents and cried the entire time. Deadlines are urgent, but would it have been so bad if I waited to fix it the next day?
People are always on their phones and rely so much on texting or social media as a primary communication method, but I know so many people who are awful at responding.Coming from a person who would rather have an in-person conversation than scroll through social media during a break, it confuses me when I see someone on their phone all the time living in their own little world. Meanwhile, one little device crashes the entire world onto me when I'm at home. I don't associate my phone with living in my own personal bubble with the flood of content and notifications from outside.
We always have our phones on us in case of an emergency or a desperate situation, but it puts so much pressure to always be engaged with other people all the time.
Dealing with people constantly whether they are annoying coworkers or classmates or your beloved family or friends. Notifications catch our attention and don't let go. Phones make multitasking much more convenient and our attention is always divided. When someone doesn't respond, instant panic and worry floods and the overthinking begins.
Being "on" doesn't always mean responding lightning quick. It's about being completely engaged with the people around you, choosing to put away the phone games and social media, and not having to let the world suck you in through the phone. I genuinely miss face-to-face conversations. No phone call or text message could ever replace those human interacts.
Staying in contact and responding in a timely manner is appropriate, but cellular communication should not define any kind of relationship or rule over any part of life. Taking a break and being in your headspace is good from time to time. But when you're walking from class or on the street, don't be afraid to look up from the phone.