We have all seen the text chain that goes way out of line or the friend that accidentally sent something to the wrong person. It was not good. The worst stories are the political figures or celebrities that now have inappropriate or mis-conduct out there for all to see and document. Here are the top rules to live by so that that never happens to you. Each and everyone of these rules is tried and true. Most have been utilized personally after personal or close contact blunders. If you stick to this list you will have the greatest tech communication ever! Everyone will think your the greatest, the wisest, the kindest and the coolest!
1) Never take a photo that you wouldn’t want at least 40 percent of your phone contacts to see. I get that Aunt “Suzzie” may not like that swimsuit or grandma may hate tattoo’s. Yet, if 40 percent of people that follow you, who you claim are “your people”, who are in your contacts (where your three year old kid could text them by accident one Saturday morning when you hand them your phone,); if these people would not laugh or appreciate it, do not take a picture of it!! Nobody wants to see a shot of who knows what that was only meant for your spouse or worse … your doctor. Just Do Not take these photo’s and you will never have a mix up with this problem.
2)Minimize group text chains – this can get out of hand very fast. Work chains that are 1000 miles long – over nothing of significance. These are quickly becoming the next wave of chain mail junk.
3a) When in a group text chain keep it to what the group was made for and not anything else. If it is a group for kitten photo’s don’t send a picture of your fish, if the family chain is meant for kids school photo’s don’t send political pieces. Keep group texts for what the group is for.
3b) Do map out what a group chain is for when starting one and stick to that.
3c) If a group chain no longer serves you – remove yourself. Life is too short to waste time on these endeavors.
4) Never ever send articles or advice unless asked. Pushing an agenda down someone’s throat never works well. If you feel the need to do this start a healthy debate in person or go blast your own personal Facebook page.
4b) If you and another have been sharing podcast’s and book recommends and you no longer want this information make sure you are kind in how you request an end. Hurt feelings over this has created a shocking amount of drama in teens and mom circles.
5) If there is an issue with someone always try and call them or better yet, meet up in person! Do not try and apologize over text. It is just bad manners and not sincere when you say “I’m sorry” in a text. Also, never text someone why they didn’t understand fully and “mis-read” you. Once again bad manners. If they don’t answer your call then write a text – leave it very gracious! Think old-school letter.
6) If you wouldn’t say it audibly don’t text it. Period.
7) Always text positive – “She is awesome!” “I love his integrity!” “We have hit a slump in our friendship, I don’t know what is going on but I miss them!” “Hope you can work it out!” “Work is tough but hey I know I’m tougher!” “I don’t understand my boss but Im trying- it is a new role for us all” ” LOL They are a hot mess, but aren’t we all”. You don’t have to be disingenuous but you do have to be able to live with what is screen shotted to other people later.
8) (My personal mantra with texting) If you ever get injured from a person’s text; you must immediately text three people something awesome to negate the negative. By being light and love yourself you can change the pattern of negativity! Even if it is just one person at a time!
9) When texting people plans make sure everyone involved knows what is going on. (I.E. your mom and your sister-in-law need to have the Christmas list or the babysitter and your spouse know what time date night starts.)
I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you’ll dream dangerously and outrageously, that you’ll make something that didn’t exist before you made it, that you will be loved and that you will be liked, and that you will have people to love and to like in return. And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be, be wise, and that you will always be kind. – Neil Gaiman