Have you ever left a hangout with your gals feeling like you were more in-tune with what happened on Facebook than in your IRL conversations? Or maybe you’ve caught yourself thinking about what’s for dinner while your friends discuss next weekend’s plans. Phone distractions or not, it’s all too easy to retreat to your inner world or social network in real-life social settings. Hey, we’re human! But if you want to make whatever quantity of time you have with your vinas quality time, read on.
We all know we should do this, but the temptations of the tweets, texts, and snaps are strong! Well, science is starting to back us up on this. This is a phenomenon called phubbing. The word made it into the Oxford English Dictionary this year and means: “the practice of ignoring one’s companion or companions in order to pay attention to one’s phone or other mobile device”. Social Psychologists are studying the phenomenon, and have found that your rude habit can have a negative effect on relationship satisfaction with your SO. While no studies have yet been done to examine the effects on other friendships, do you really want to jeopardize your relationship with your BFFs with idle Facebook feed scrolling?
A phone is a major distraction for some, but the next biggest distraction from your friends could be whatever is on your mind. You’ll get your turn, but in the meantime, it’s important to really listen to your friends. To be present amongst your friends you’ll want to employ some active listening skills. Active listening requires your full concentration on your friends and what they’re saying. That sounds easy, but I know I can easily get sidetracked in my head and start thinking about what I’m going to say back. The key is to just listen.
I cannot express how important it is to make time for your friends and make that time the only thing occupying the space. It’s one thing to show up to hang out, but another thing entirely if there’s a deadline looming that you should be working on, or if you’re in the middle of planning something with someone else. Being physically present is important, but so is being mentally present. When carving out valuable vina time, consider what else is happening around that event and make sure nothing else will cut into it! Quality is more important than quantity!
How do you consciously remain present when spending time with your vinas?