Are you Phubbing? 3 ways to stop with your partner
What is Phubbing?
Phubbing is the habit of snubbing a physically present person in favor of a cell phone. The term was coined in 2012 by the McCann Advertising agency, as a mash up of phone and snubbing. You may not know the term, but know the behavior.
Phones are an integral part of the connected human experience due to the interconnectedness of our society to school, work, media, social media, blogging, apps, podcasting, etc.. Phones are a great tool and means of connection. They are also a means of disconnection if you choose the phone in favor of being present with your partner, friend, family member, etc..
3 Ways To Stop
Have Phone Boundaries when with your partner
It is not maliciousness but rather mindlessness that often causes a disconnect. When our partner turns to us with an emotional need, or to simply be heard, do we stop what we are doing and give them our full attention? Or do we mumble something and nod a little, all-the-while checking our Instagram feed?
One of the most important steps to reconnecting is to become more self-aware and understand that you are, most likely, not paying your partner the kind of attention they seek and deserve. When they reach for you, reach back.
Try to Understand Your Partner Better
Often times disconnection comes not from what is said between you both but what is not said. Many couples complain they feel their partner wants them to be a mind reader!
But what partners really want is for the other person to take the time to get to know them. Think of it, if you’ve been with your spouse or partner for three years, five years, fifteen years and maybe you don’t know what scares them, frustrates them or pleases them, what does that say?
Communicate Wind Down or Focus Moments Proactively
Many people use their phone to “take a break” from their environment or those they are physically with. Your experience and that of your partner may be different if you make it known that you are taking 20 minutes to catch up on your social media and then can help make dinner. This does two things simultaneously. It lets your partner know you are not ignoring them, and when they can expect you to be available.
You and your partner may even wind down on the couch after a long day with your phones; this is not a bad thing as long as you are both feeling present with each other and enjoying “quiet time”.
Taking the time to increase your self-awareness of your relationship to your phone and to those that matter in your life will increase your overall emotional intelligence.