Who matters more?

phonesLet’s face it. We are not alone anymore. I don’t mean alien visitors. I’m talking about the smart phones in our purses and pockets, which carry around our best friends wherever we go. With so many friends there is no way to keep up, especially through old-fashioned live voice conversations.

So we drop asynchronous breadcrumbs… posts, comments, likes and private messages to let our friends know we care, ask for help or trash talk during the game. So much activity draws us down into our devices, even in public places that used to be known for talking face-to-face rather than face-to-Facebook.

It’s ironic that I am posting this in social media to caution against overdoing it with social media, and I must say I am an equal offender in all of these claims. But please bear with me for the point.

All people matter… the people in your phone and the people in your immediate physical proximity. You have to decide at any given moment who matters more, because you make a choice to ignore one when you talk to the other. Note: online people don’t always know when they are being ignored, but present company see it immediately.

Back in the day, I was taught to greet anyone I passed on the street or stood in line behind with a hearty hello. And to abandon a face-to-face conversation by looking down and away would be considered just plain rude. Yet this is commonplace behavior today.

If you are surrounded by boring or scary people in your physical proximity, I don’t blame you for diving down into your device to talk to your BFF’s. And yet I can’t help wondering if you may be missing opportunities to make new BFF’s by not looking up. One hello and a smile could change your life.

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