Do you love to text? If so, you are not alone. Apparently, the number of text messages sent daily is six billion and over 2.2 trillion yearly. And that is in the United States alone! Carpal tunnel anyone? Thank goodness for unlimited texting service plans! I love to text and I will admit I text frequently. I’ll also even admit I text when it is ill-advised such as driving, in class or even walking. Imagine someone texting and fall going up the stairs. Yes, I’ve done that. I have no shame whatsoever.
What’s The Deal?
When it comes to texting, what do you text? Do you “chit-chat” and have a small text-versation(totally made that word up) or are you like me who enjoy having deep, intellectual ones? Are you the kind that just texts your friend that you are in their driveway waiting on them? Are you the type to do sexting? In any way, shape or form, we all have texted one way or another. The problem is that texting is taking away and damaging our interpersonal skills.Over 75% of teenagers text making it the most common type of communication and this cuts out phone calls and face-to-face conversations. I know from my own personal experience that I prefer texting over phone calls or personal conversations because let’s all admit, we just do not have time to sit down and have a conversation with a family or friend.
IDK What This All Means?
Texting is human interaction, it’s just a different kind and thus, communication is everything! Texting is a form of Nonverbal communication which in the textbook, Interpersonal Communication: Everyday Encounters by Julia Wood, it means this type of communication is everything but words. This can include symbols, body language, inflection, tone, facial expressions, etc. Nonverbal communication is arbitrary, ambiguous, and abstract. This means that a wink, for example, cannot be defined clearly because of different meanings. To some people, a wink can express a romantic interest to someone, a dirty signal or even a simple got-something-caught-in-the-eye. Now if we wink to someone in person, it still may clearly not be defined but through a text message, you can have a field day thinking exactly what that wink means 😉
I’m Sorry Vs. I’m Sorry
In this fascinating article, it basically says that texting is damaging people’s, especially children’s, interpersonal skills and those building blocks to making relationships. The article gave an example of someone giving an apology over text messaging which it basically boiled down to text messaging lacks the visual and audio cues of a sincere apology in person or over the phone rather than a bland “I’m sorry” over text messaging. I know from my experience of sending an apology over text messaging, that the other recipient of that text did not believe that my apology was sincere enough which later destroyed our friendship because of it. If I had apologized in person like I should have done, all the audio and visual cues of my sincerity would have been recognized and not lost in translation through text messaging.
What Did You Learn?
By continually learning about communication, one can learn a ton and can learn that even the most common things we do, we don’t know how it affects our way of communicating and its meaning especially in the sense of nonverbal communication which is a form of communication that is everything but words and meanings are hard to interpret. As seen in texting, we can’t tell what the other person is really texting because we can’t see the visual or hear the audio cues in their voice. Can you imagine texting something that someone took way out of context and you became embarrassed by it? Or if worse things could have happened? I hope you can see how important it is to know about communication and all about the various aspects of it. In this case, nonverbal communication and texting. I know I learned my mistake with the apologetic text a few years ago. As you can see, texting is taking over and is taking over communication. However, if we learn how to use texting and other types of this communication wisely, we can still hold a decent face-to-face conversation Happy texting everyone! Don’t text and drive. 😉