Why phone calls should be banned.
Please. Stop. Calling. Me. I'm baffled on a daily basis by those who think it's necessary to call me. Or call anyone for that matter. Unless you have an emergency at hand - calling is absolutely redundant. Sure, if you need to warn me that there's a serial killer hiding in the backseat of my car - please call. If you were out hiking and fell off the edge of a cliff and you need me to come rescue you - call me. But if you're calling for almost any other reason, it's really not effective or necessary.
Sounds harsh, I know. And if you are one of those people who make phone calls, I've got nothing against you at all. Don't worry, I don't hate you for calling me, and I won't hold it against you if you continue to call me. I get it - you must find it useful. But please know that I do not like being called. Why?
Not like, for real. But I have tinnitus, which means I have a constant ringing in my ears. Makes it very difficult to understand what people are saying over the phone. Chances are, I can't hear anything you're saying and am just going "uh huh, yep, sure, no worries" in an attempt to get off the phone sooner. Usually I use nonverbal communication to get me by in situations where I'm having trouble hearing, but over the phone all I have is your voice. Which I can't hear.
You called to ask me about that thing and the time for this and the place for that. By the time we've hung up the phone, I can almost guarantee I've completely forgotten everything you've asked me for. Wouldn't it be easier to email me so that I can get back to you with an informed response?
My phone is on silent 100% of the time. Because I'm doing something important, and do not wish to be interrupted by anything. When you've got multiple jobs and projects on the go, chances are that when you call me about your thing - I'm actually busy working on something completely unrelated. In this age of being constantly available, I make it my business to be available on my terms. I will check my messages and emails when I choose, and reply to them in good time. Because who wants to constantly be bombarded with everyone else's stuff when you're concentrating? Or even more importantly, when you're relaxing.
I don't have time.
By the time you get out your phone, dial my number, leave a voicemail, call me back, have me answer, tell me your thing - you could have written a message, sent it to me and received a reply. Legit. Most phone calls I get go for 5 - 15 minutes and could have easily been sorted with a couple of messages or emails. In a fraction of the time. If I replaced all my written communications with phone calls - I'd never get anything else done. It's just not practical.
I like to multitask.
When you call me, I can do nothing else. I cannot type an email, I can't paint, I can't exercise - all I'm doing is helping you with one little thing. You render me incapable of productivity. If you'd sent me a message instead, I can reply to that whilst replying to many other messages. Or even while I'm out walking. Or while eating dinner. Or on the toilet. So many delightful possibilities.
So there you have it. I may sound like a huge grump about this - but I just really don't like getting phone calls. Nothing personal I assure you, totally happy to get a text or email about anything at any time. From anyone! But ever since I was a kid I've disliked phone calls - they just make me uncomfortable. So please, before calling anyone about something that's not urgent, maybe take a second to consider that the other person might not want a phone call.