Cellular phones have had a major impact on our lives and the way that we perform every day tasks. Many of these changes are apparent, while others we may not even be aware of.
Cell phones have brought a whole new meaning to the term multitasking. Twenty years ago, it was not possible to talk to the office while you were at the grocery store picking up some necessary items. You could never have had a three-way business conference while you were fixing dinner or been able to deal with a business client from home while caring for a sick child. Cell phones have enabled us to do various tasks all at the same time.
Cell phones have also enabled families to keep in closer touch with each other. Children can contact you if they have missed their ride form soccer practice and your spouse can call while he is stuck in traffic to let you know that he is going to be late for supper. Teenagers are able to call to ask permission to go somewhere, and with GPS features that are now available on some cell phones, you are able to check to make sure that they are where they are suppose to be.
Many of these advantages we do not even notice. Have you ever arrived at the grocery store and realized that you have forgotten your grocery list? The first thing you would probably do is to call home and have one of your children read the list off to you. In the same situation in past years, you may have forgotten things or have had to drive all the way back home to get it. If your car breaks down, you automatically call for help instead of having to walk to find a pay phone. Cell phones have certainly made our lives much more convenient.
Cell phones have also changed the way that people interact with each other. When we call someone, we are actually calling the person and not a place. This enables us to be more spontaneous when making plans as you rarely get a busy signal and unlike a land line telephone, someone is always home. Cell phones also enable us to call if we are going to be late for an appointment, although this has led to cell phone users running late more often than those who do not have cell phones. These users seem to have adopted the attitude that appointment times are not concrete and use their cell phones to renegotiate their arrival time.
One of the greatest disadvantages of the cellular phone is the fact that we do not talk to strangers when traveling anymore. In the past, several people waiting for a bus would engage in a conversation while they were waiting. People who traveled the same routes every day might develop friendships along the way. This situation does not happen anymore. Today when people are waiting for a bus, they just pull out their cell phones and speak with old friends, missing out on the opportunity to make new ones. In large cities, many people do not know their neighbors, even though they may have lived in the same neighborhood for years. As a society, we are beginning to lose the face-to-face contact that was such an important part of our lives in the past.
Cell phones are a great asset in aiding in our every day lives. You should remember, however, to hang up every once in a while and pay attention to the world around you.