Cell phones have become an integral part of our every day lives. Unfortunately, they have also become a source of contention when it comes to poor cell phone etiquette. Follow these six rules to avoid some major faux paus with your device.
1. Put your phone away at the dinner table.
The cell phone is ever present in the car, in the back pocket, even the bathroom and unfortunately, at the dinner table. Now that’s just the adults I am talking about! But if there is a line in the proverbial sand that should be drawn let it be here, at the dinner table.
To limit the cell phone intrusion, you could create a charging station where phones get checked in before dinner, pass around a cell phone collection basket, or place all devices under the chair when it’s time to eat.
2. End phone conversations when paying for purchases.
Cashiers are people, too. Just because you don’t know them doesn’t mean they deserve any less of your attention when they are checking you out. Also, if they do make a mistake in your order, how would you know? Unless there is a legitimate emergency, wait till you are done paying for your purchases.
3. Never shout when talking on the phone.
Unless there is a fire, save the shouting for a more deserving moment. Loud conversations are improper, too -no one finds your conversation as interesting as you do. If you need to get “real” with the person on the other end of that phone line, take it someplace private.
4. Never text or talk and drive.
Pretty much everyone has done this and knows they shouldn’t. So, here is a nice statistical reminder:
- 26% of all car crashes in 2014 involved cell phone use.
- In 2015, 42% of teens say they have texted while driving—and texting and driving is the leading cause of death in teens.
- A teen driver with only one additional passenger doubles the risk of getting into a fatal car accident. With two or more passengers, they are 5x as likely. Now add cell phone usage to that mix….
5. Avoid texting in work meetings.
The person you are really disrespecting here is the person holding the meeting. If you must have your phone, put it on silent -not vibrate. Also, place it face down on the table or, better yet, out of sight. Be present in your meetings and give your meeting host your undivided attention.
6. Turn off the phone in places such as a church, temple, or theatre.
Let’s make a compromise here. You can be on your phone in a movie theatre -surfing the web and not having a conversation with someone- before the lights dim and the pre-movie showings begin. The dimming lights are your cue to be quiet and respectful.
Contributed by Angelica Mecham