Why I Prefer Calls Over Texts
A “long” time ago we lived in a barbaric age where... cellphones DIDN’T EXIST! Texting was unheard of, and even email was non existent! Now for me, phones were a common tool throughout my life, but I never really appreciated them.
You see, growing up, texting was the cool thing to do when you first got a cellphone. If I recall correctly, my parents graciously got me my first flip cellphone when I was in 6th grade (shout-out to my awesome folks!). The only people I ever really called were my family. For my friends, it was either texting or using AIM (my username was CraZboneZ82). Little did I know, the day I started texting would be the same day that I started to question my every text.
“What should I say?”
“Should I reply right away?” Let me wait a few minutes so I don’t seem like I’m always on my phone.
“Did I send a funny joke?”
I think I should capitalize this word.
“What does ‘ROTFLOL’ mean?!”
There was always a constant battle between myself and texting. A lot of these nuances that were core to texting confused the hell out of me and I never really understood it. Even today, there is “proper etiquette,” or a set of rules/guidelines when texting. What baffles me the most is that everyone is playing this communication game with a different set of rules/guidelines!
Now I want to be clear, I enjoy texting and it has done wonders for me in keeping in contact with people, scheduling, and so much more. All I’m saying is that since entering the world of a working adult, calling has become my best friend.
My golden rule to maintaining my relationships with my friends and family is this...
CALL PEOPLE MORE OFTEN
and here’s why:
1. Calls are infinitely more efficient than texting
What you can accomplish on an hour long phone call significantly outweighs that of a text conversation. Don’t believe me? Imagine this:
Someone texts you, “how have you been?! what have you been up to?”
You back track in your mind to the last time you’ve spoken to this individual. You quickly summarize the major key events that have happened, nothing more than listing them in somewhat chronological order, and conclude at where you are at now. You hit send.
You see the infamous “...” then nothing. A response doesn’t come until a few minutes later. You read and then you text out another summary and the process is just rinsed and repeated until someone either stops responding or ends the conversation.
A mere “catching up” with a friend you haven’t spoken to in months could turn into a several day long texting battle. Where’s the efficiency in that?
2. There’s no confusion or breakdown in communication
It’s crazy how misleading a text message can be. It’s hard to tell if someone is angry, passive, sarcastic, or even happy sometimes. I have some VERY sarcastic friends, but some of them aren’t the best at expressing that through a text. Yes, one could argue that if you know the person, then you should be able to figure it out, but can you honestly say you’ve never been confused?
Another aspect is the fact that many times, text conversations are interrupted by one party not responding. Maybe they had to take out the trash or they had to go grocery shopping. The communication is broken and it’s not always easy jumping back into it.
Here's a video made by the legendary comedians, Key & Peele, that so purely depict the struggles of texting sometimes.
**NOTE: THIS VIDEO CONTAINS PROFANITY.
VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED**
Now after that good laugh, let's get back into a few more reasons why I prefer calls over texting!
3. Realizing the little things about why you enjoy having this person in your life
Picture this. Your best friend is the absolute king of dad jokes and puns. It’s to the point where it starts to rub off on you! Not a single word ending in “er” like “baler” is safe from a response like, “Baler?! I hardly know her!” (Thank you Michael Scott from The Office). You decide to call him up and have a grand ole time catching up. Now would this have been possible through text? Possibly... but probably not!
Some people are naturally gifted with the skill to type out how they feel in an elegant way, but does that do it all? All I’m saying is, there’s no way a text can even begin to emulate the beautiful little nuances of the people in your life.
Your moms voice alone can comfort your soul.
Your best friend has a thunderous guffaw.
Your significant other snorts when they can’t stop laughing.
It’s in these actual conversations and these little interactions over the phone or in person that truly resonate with you and continue to foster that bond between people.
4. Intentional conversation
The last point I want to make is the fact that the time you set aside to call someone holds so much intent behind it. When I schedule a time with someone to have a call at 10 AM on a Saturday morning, a mutual decision of trust occurs. I trust that the other person won’t schedule to workout at 10 AM just as they trust that I don’t sleep in until 12:30 PM.
Sure, people multitask, but at its core, when that phone call starts, both people are choosing to spend that time sharing, listening, and being present.
It’s a beautiful thing.
I’m not as close geographically to my friends as I used to be, and I don’t get many opportunities to see the ones I cherish. I do my best to stay in touch with the people I care about, but life always seems to get in the way.
If this resonates with you at all, then I want to challenge you. I want to challenge you to stop your thumbs when you go to text someone. Rather, dial the number and give them a call. Hear their voice.
Laugh, learn, and listen.
If you ever need practice or just want to talk, please don’t hesitate to send an email and set up a phone call!
Stay Safe, Stay You =]