PLEEEAAASSSE put that thing away! There was a time, in what now seems like ancient history, that if you heard a parent yelling that to his or her child, the odds were that the child was handling a knife or something equally dangerous, or, perhaps a pet toad. Not so anymore. Today, when you hear those five words, the chances are pretty good that the parent is referring to the child’s cell phone.

We have become a society of connection. Connected to one another through texting, calling, instant messaging and social media-ing (yes, we know there is no such word 😉). At one very dangerous extreme, teenagers (and adults) text while they drive. At the other very ludicrous extreme, teenagers (and adults) text each other while they are together in the same room. Who among us has not felt annoyance at hearing strangers’ conversations, or having a quiet, maybe even, nervous wait in a doctor’s office be interrupted by a variety of ringtones?

Our cellphones have become, plain and simple, an addiction. And, addictions can be unhealthy. So, since the TUNG Brush and Gel team wants healthy readers and customers, here are a few thoughts as we celebrate National Cell Phone Courtesy Month.

Good Cell Phone Manners

  1. Put your phone away while you are in a meeting. Keep it hidden in your pocket or purse so the meeting attendees know you are paying attention to the work at hand.
  2. Keep your phone on silent when you are in a restaurant, doctor’s office or other public place if you think you may be getting an important message or call.
  3. Walk out of the room if that message or call comes – excuse yourself and STEP OUT. No one wants to get into your business.
  4. Watch your language when you are on the phone if you are within earshot of others. No one wants to hear your cussing – it is just plain embarrassing.
  5. Don’t talk/text and drive. You may think that is obvious, but if you have to make a call, wait until you pull over, and if you get a call, ignore it until you are in a safe place to talk then call back.

Some people we know will insist that when they are out to dinner with friends that everyone has to put his/her phone in the middle of the table and the first person to grab his/her phone has to pay for dinner…for everyone! Not a bad idea.  We have lost the art of conversation and of socialization. It wasn’t that long ago that people somehow survived the trip home without a phone, that most dinner conversations used actual, audible words, that a long wait at the airport or a doctor’s office meant catching up on reading your favorite magazine or book.

So, how about trying to break the addiction? Think about how you complain about that guy who doesn’t stop talking in the waiting room. Then sit back and realize, you are that guy!  We know it takes baby steps, but we want you all to be healthy, and not just by maintaining a good diet, keeping up with exercise and using your toothbrush and Tung Brush and Gel daily – we want you MENTALLY healthy too!

And that means using your mind, using your communications skills and looking the other person in the room in the eye…in the real eye, not the eye you see in that tiny screen. You might just notice that he or she is actually paying attention to you, too!