People do not talk anymore...they text or post to social media

A few interesting articles I've come across recently with this being a hot topic and an unfortunate trend... People today choose to communicate via text, email or social media instead of doing things the "old fashioned" way where people communicated by speaking to each other face to face or via telephone. This has been a growing problem with families, relationships and even on the business level.

In an article published in the Huffington Post, " Why Don't We Talk Anymore " by Sophia A. Wilson, she made some great points regarding how to she copes with this dilemma:

My rule, and I try never to break this ever, is that I will 1.) Pick up the phone at least twice to try and talk if there is a conflict of any kind. If my call is not returned. I will send an email or note asking to talk. If that is ignored, I have done my part. 2.) If I sub-tweet (meaning you don’t name names but everyone in the know knows who you are talking about) it is only after I tried to talk woman to woman or man to man first. If I talk about it beyond that I will use my platform as a writer and columnist to try and teach others what I have learned. 3.) If I am wrong. I admit it quickly. And I will offer a sincere human to human apology if afforded that opportunity. It’s just the right thing to do.

I want to end by saying this: When you talk things out, you build bridges. When you listen to people, see their eyes, hear their hearts, everybody wins. Even if you decide ultimately to not remain friends, or to be involved, all of us deserves to be heard. To not talk is to cheat yourself out of learning the truth of how someone feels, or what they need. In business, and in our professional lives the people who succeed have high emotional intelligence. They have empathy, patience, they listen, they ask questions and most importantly they receive feedback. They want to know how their people feel, think and operate on a very human level. It leads to greater connection, productivity and revenues.

We must rediscover how to TALK again. We have lost our way. We are all dying from neglect of our souls. The human soul must be watered to thrive. Conversation is how we share our deepest thoughts, needs, and desires one with another. The next time you are tempted to tweet, text, post on facebook, or send an email. Stop. Think. And pick up the phone, Skype or invite the person to coffee. Watch what begins to happen in your life as a result. Your relationships across the board will start to blossom, grow, and thrive!
— Sophia A. Nelson (Award Winning Journalist & Author. Corporate/Personal Development Trainer, Cultural & Political Columnist for The Daily Beast/Women In The World, MSNBC & USATODAY)

Now I'm in my late 20's and yes even though I grew up around technology and social media, I do have to admit that I am guilty of texting to talk to my colleagues, friends and family. However, I did get over this quick after being bombarded by constant text messages from my sister or other friends who prefer not to pick up the phone. One day, I decided to give each of them a final message and told them to pick up the phone and call me because it's very unprofessional and text messages or Facebook posts / Tweets can and will lead to miscommunication and before you know'll be in a big argument with someone that you didn't mean to start an argument with...The worst part...the argument will be over something stupid over what one person said in a text or post on social media. It's ridiculous how our times have changed and the one thing we are lacking today is the very basic principles of communication. 

When going to family dinners over the years, I've seen kids on their mobile devices: cellphones, tablets. Meanwhile..this is time with grandma, grandpa, dad, mom, or any other family member. This is your time with this person in the family on a very important day. Your friend's text message or your friend's Facebook post and Tweet can wait !  

Since I'm still on the topic of communication, here are some steps to encourage kids to communicate better and build their social skills that'll help them when they enter the real world once they enter the real world and find jobs on their own from Amy McCready, Today Moms Contributtor , " Don't let technology rob kids of social skills "

So what can we do to make sure our kids have the social skills they need to thrive with family, friends, and on the job? As parents, we need to be more intentional than ever about teaching manners and the art of communication. We can help our kids succeed in a technologically-driven world that still values interpersonal communication. Consider this Parenting 2.0—here are a few ideas to get you started.

Show them how it’s done and model good communication for your kids. That means shutting down Facebook while at the playground and being fully present in the moment. We can show kids the basics of communication when we use “please” and “thank you” in our daily interactions, like at a restaurant or store, or with our kids when they put their toys away. They’ll see how to make eye contact when we have a conversation with a friend at the basketball game. The dinner table is also a great place to model and practice communication on a daily basis.

Take time up-front for training and your kids will be ready for social situations. Kids don’t instinctively know the p’s and q’s of good manners; it’s up to us to teach them how to greet adults, how to introduce themselves, and how to graciously accept compliments. Practice shaking hands and play games to focus on holding eye contact. Role-play how to ask questions and how to use a strong, clear voice. For older kids, talk about good topics and phrases to engage adults in polite small talk. And even though it seems like we don’t use our phones for actual talking much anymore, make sure to teach good phone manners as well.

Practice makes polite, so give your kids lots of chances to try out their new skills. With the holiday season in full swing, there will be many opportunities to put their new skills to work. Make sure your kids are prepared. Practice a few key phrases Emily can use at the neighborhood holiday party. Take turns shaking hands and making eye contact with Jack before you head out caroling. Turn the trek to Grandma’s house into a chance to come up with good small talk topics to use with the aunts and uncles. And if your kids forget to say thank you in the moment, come up with a small non-verbal sign ahead of time so you can remind them without embarrassing them.

Raise your expectations… after you’ve taken the time for training. When your kids have the basics of good communication mastered, it’s time to raise the bar on the manners and skills that you expect to see. Joey needs to write his own thank you notes for his birthday gifts – about five sentences long for a fifth grader, for example. When Sidney sees Mr. Smith at the grocery store, she needs to use his name when she greets him.

Take a textcation. Texting, social media and other technology is here to stay, but make sure you have clear, understood limits for its use. Let kids know how much tech time they are allowed each day and reveal consequences in advance for not adhering to your family rules. Keep certain times of the day free of phones and computers, and create quiet, technology-free zones in your house.

Encourage your kids when you see progress. Let them know you’ve noticed how hard they’ve been working on improving their skills. If we encourage our kids when we see them use good eye contact or gracefully accept a compliment, they’re more likely to keep up the good work in the future.

While cell phones, texting and social media become ubiquitous in everyday life, we don’t have to allow them to rob our kids of the social skills they’ll need throughout life. By taking time for up-front training and giving kids plenty of opportunities to practice their skills, we can set them up for success in a world that will always value good old-fashioned, face-to-face communication skills.
— Amy McCready (Today Contributor)


When I get together with people either for a meeting or for lunch and dinner, my #1 rule is to tell them to put away their phones and don't check for any messages unless it is very important and by important, that being it is a life and death situation and it requires immediate response.

So please everyone..if you are having dinner with family, friends or a courtesy, put away your phones and tablets... You would not like it if the tables were turned where you are trying to make conversation with someone and they didn't pay attention to you will you? Of course not..