Text messaging has come a long way in recent years from its beginning on non-qwerty keypads. The ta-tap-tap motion once required to create words and sentences naturally created slow text messaging. The keyboard familiarity and two-thumbed capability of the QWERTY keypad caused texting to grow at an almost out of control rate. Once QWERTY keypads became commonplace and popular, two-thumbed texting took off and a whole new method of communication was born.
We are all guilty of texting, and have all found ourselves in a situation where we say something inappropriate via text that strains a relationship, whether it’s the proverbial “K” or “NVM” after someone sends you a long, heartfelt message, or the seeming brusqueness and unprofessionalism of conducting business interactions via text messages.
Texting Instead of Talking
One of the worst instances of text message intrusion is texting instead of talking to your client or boss. There’s also the invasive feel of unsolicited selling via text that many businesses use today. Face-to-face or voice-to-voice interactions are almost always a better business choice. Texting can leave your client or boss with the impression that you’re lazy or that they don’t matter enough to warrant your time.
The same holds true in romantic relationships. Your romantic interest wants to feel worthy of your time and attention and sometimes a text message just won’t do the trick. Not many things can start an argument faster than a text message that gets read with a tone the sender never intended. And, let’s not forget the damage done via sexting. Inappropriate pictures that seem romantic in the heat of the moment, become weapons in the aftermath of a breakup. Trust us when we say, just don’t do it. That kind of text damage is difficult to recover from.
A one-word reply to a long, rambling text has caused many a hearty fight. That type of response makes someone feel as if you are ignoring their thoughts and feelings, and can put a rather big strain on your relationship. It can prevent loved ones from talking to you about important topics when they feel as if you don’t care or that they won’t be able to get the emotional support they need from your text contribution.
Miscommunication is also a serious text related concern because tone and inflection are not easily portrayed in text messages. Whether or not something is sarcastic or serious can easily go over someone else’s head, and can turn into an issue down the line. Even more damage can occur when you inadvertently send a text to the wrong recipient. Imagine a raucous joke intended for Matt that gets sent to Mom. Yikes!
It’s easy to avoid texting angst by taking a few simple precautions into consideration. The main thing is to make sure that when you have to communicate via text, you do with respect. Make a point of letting the other person know that you are listening to them, even if you must do so with only a few words. However, it’s best to communicate in person or on the phone when you can, as this develops a personal bond and relationship that simply isn’t present in a text message. This helps avoid issues with miscommunications and lowers potential strain in the long run. So, consider putting down the text messages and dialing that phone number instead.