What is Phubbing?
Are advancements in social technology ruining communication?
It has become very apparent that we as a society spend great amounts of time on our mobile devices and browsing the web. Even at social gatherings it isn't rare to find someone with their attention glued to some sort of mobile device. As technology advancements have greatly increased the way we communicate with others at a great distance, it has lessened and cheapened the experience of communicating with someone in close proximity as well.
Face-to-face communication has become a rare sight. Rather than speak with someone in person, we've taken to messaging and emailing to get our points and information across. Things have even gotten so out of hand that a new word was created by Macquarie Dictionary in an effort to create awareness around this topic. "Phubbing" refers to the act of snubbing another person in a social environment by staring at your phone rather than pay attention.
Not only is it rude to ignore someone in a social setting in favor of your mobile device, but such increased levels of electronic communication can most definitely have a detrimental effect on social, writing, and professionalism skills. Part of being a functional adult in our society is having the ability to speak your mind, address your concerns, convey information in a functional and articulate manner. As "phubbing" runs rampant in our society, these skills become much harder to acquire and maintain.
We're humans, we thrive on human interaction!
Try a few activities listed below to get a better understanding of how communication in today's world has evolved. I know some of these may seem very basic or archaic, but it's nice to take a step back and see just how much we rely on our digital devices in a day-to-day manner.
1. Check out some of the statistics and other information on http://stopphubbing.com/
What do you think? Are these numbers expected, are they surprising? Organize and write your thoughts on Phubbing in an personal medium such as a journal, diary, etc.
2. Next time you're at a restaurant eating with friends or family, try turning off your phone and putting it away so that it won't even have the opportunity of becoming a distraction. This way you won't even be tempted to take a quick look. Spark up conversations, communicate about recent events or your interests, hobbies, and passions. You'll be amazed at just how much better ideas, tones, and messages are better relayed in a face-to-face fashion.
3. Next time you need to tell someone a quick little piece of information, try doing it in person! For example, asking your professor for help on an assignment, telling your roommate to buy more laundry detergent, or just simply saying hello to a friend you haven't talked to in a while. If that person is readily available, relay the message in person. Tell them what you would like them to know or address your information in a personal manner. You'll be amazed at interpersonal communication's ability to elevate your mood and brighten your day!