While visiting Los Angeles this past weekend, I ate at a fabulous Mexican restaurant called Poncho’s on Manhattan Beach. I had to use the bathroom and happened to walk by what I assume was a couple at their table. They both were on their phones texting, surfing, and tweeting away. When I returned from the bathroom, they were still doing the same thing—no contact, no conversation, no engagement, just endless phone usage. My friends and I left the restuarant about twenty minutes later and the good looking man and woman were still heads down, fully engaged to whatever was going on on their phones. It was then that I thought that the whole using a smartphone constantly on a date situation was not a good look.
I am sometimes guilty of this. Being the Digital Debutante that I am, I am always responding to emails and working while I am out and about on my phone—the world does not stop while I am on the go, and I have the type of phone I have so I can still get work done while not being in my home cubicle. But I have tried to not let the phone distract me or suck up my attention when I am out with the significant other or a friend. Being on the phone while on a date or out with someone constantly is rude—checking it from time to time is okay; but the couple above who was on their phones for 30 to 40 minutes straight can’t be good for a relationship.
The advancement of technology has caused, in my humble opinion, people to be less focused on one another and more focused on what is going on everywhere else. Being plugged in all of the time really wreaks havoc on the way we communicate with one another. Instead of phone calls, we text and inbox one another, and everything has become automated and less personal. A date is the time to bond and to spend time with the one you care about—being on your phone during the whole date shows that the person you are with doesn’t have your full, undivided attention.
Last year while out and about with my S/O, I caught myself spending way too much time on my phone and he called me on it. I was told at that time it was either him or the phone, so unless it was an emergency, or a quick glance at an email, it shouldn’t be used, point blank period.
It is hard, but I have learned to keep my phone in my purse while out on a date, and we have a three minute rule on all phone use. After three minutes, we have to put our phones away, which has caused an increase in our conversations. We laugh more and we talk more, and generally have a better time when we are out.
Smartphones are the best thing since sliced bread, but they shouldn’t be a replacement for genuine communication and engagement during a date.
What are your thoughts?
Photo credit: Glamour Magazine