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This Is Happening: When Mobiles Are More Important Than Sex

This Is Happening: When Mobiles Are More Important Than Sex

Mobile phones have given us the ability to keep in contact with our friends, family, and co-workers, no matter where we are geographically; they also give us a lifeline in case we have car trouble, or are otherwise in danger. However, they have also presented the unique problem of becoming more important than our interpersonal connections. In a way, our primary relationship seems to be with the phone, rather than with another person. This had led to several oddities that need to be remedied very soon.

People check their phones while they are out dining with friends, spending time with their children, and shopping; they have become almost like a third arm. Many people state that they feel “lost” without their phones, but we have functioned many years without them. So what has changed? Are Americans so afraid of missing out on something online, that they will sacrifice living in the moment? Sadly, it appears this is the truth.

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When asked whether Americans couldn’t live without their mobile phones or sex, an astounding 26% said they couldn’t live without their phones over the 20% that couldn’t live without sex. Perhaps this is because 44% of U.S. cellphone owners sleep with their cellphones, and 67% of us check our phones even when they are not ringing or vibrating. This indicates an almost obsessive behavior with an inanimate object.

Since we have become obsessive about checking our cellphones, perhaps it should not be surprising that 69% of American single people are unsure whether or not an outing with someone they liked was a date or not. Which could explain the 27% of Americans who live in one-person households, which is up from 1970’s mere 17%.

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In a study by FinancesOnline.com, they examined some of the peculiar habits Americans display and how they are affecting every day life:

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    What does this mean? We enjoy spending time with our pets and our cellphone more than we enjoy the company of other people? Or is it simply that by the time we have finished working a full day, we do not have the energy to do anything else. Americans are worried about where their food comes from, the environment, and water, but not about the failing state of our interpersonal relationships. 67% of Americans have wondered if their food and beverages were produced in an eco-friendly, sustainable way.

    It seems a bit hard to understand that American care about the environment, but not each other. Possibly it is a case of Americans trying to do too many things at a time; we have a tendency to over-book, over-schedule, and over-work ourselves. We sacrifice time with our families, in order to gain respect and position at work. We sacrifice quality of work, in order to spend time with our families and not miss out on their activities. There does not seem to be a happy medium and this is true more now than ever before. In our fast-paced society, where you can get behind in an instant, it is almost impossible to take a break, relax, and just be in the moment, but the ironic thing is, we need those breaks now more than ever before, as well.

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    Whether you believe cell phones are the best technological innovation since the computer or you believe they are harming our every day lives; one thing is certain: they are a very integral part of our lives. Perhaps we should focus more on putting down our phones and turning our attentions to our friends and families. This way, we can live in the moment and check our emails, Facebooks, and Twitters later. Otherwise, our odd habits are bound to increase.

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    The Gentle Art of Saying No

    The Gentle Art of Saying No

    No!

    It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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    But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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    What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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    But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

    1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
    2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
    3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
    4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
    5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
    6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
    7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
    8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
    9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
    10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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