I usually can’t leave the house without my cell phone. Yes, I have a desk phone and Skype on my computer, but for some reason not having my cell phone makes me feel vulnerable and out of touch.
I’ve even been known to turn around and get it if I have time. Lately, though, I’ve left it at home on purpose or accidental purpose and it feels sort of freeing.
A trip to the grocery store or dinner with friends is so much more relaxing. I tend to keep my phone on silent or vibrate instead of ring anyway, but that doesn’t keep a call or text from interrupting a conversation.
The more I leave my phone at home when meeting friends, the more I realize how prevalent it is to just glance at a text or check a missed call in the middle of a conversation. I realize just how rude I’ve been to the person across the table. I’ve essentially told them, by checking my phone, that you are less important than this piece of technology.
My solution is to leave the phone at home a bit more often and concentrate on the conversation I’m having in person.
There is a caveat to this solution. Obviously, if you are expecting a very important call or text (as in something the person across the table from you would deem just as important) then tell your friend ahead of time, “I’m expecting a call about X and I hope you understand that I’m not trying to insult you if I check my phone.”