9 Important Steps To Make Sure Technology Doesn't Pass You By

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woman using phone

Technology FTW.

When I went to college I felt estranged from my parents.

The only way we could communicate was with a landline, which I had to stand in line to use. Now I can shoot texts back and forth with my son, with links to interesting news bits, YouTube videos or music, and pictures of the cats doing dumb things while looking cute.

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I get that you want to do things your own way, perhaps what you consider the "right" way. I completely understand. But there are some anachronisms in the twenty-first century that are just plain annoying, even to a dinosaur like me. Making them will affect your relationships, dating and work life, and prevent effective communication.

Pretty please heed my advice and avoid these nine twenty-first century faux pas:

1. Don't Leave Voicemail Messages

If you don't know this by now, here's the thing: No one under 35 listens to the voicemail. And if you do get a callback, don't expect the person to know what your message said because, and I hate to be redundant, no one listens to voicemail.

2. Email With Caution

I'm not sure what the age cut off is on this, but some people only read their email every leap year, if that often. Send a text. If that's beyond you, it's probably time to learn. This is how the world works now.

3. Don't Text A Landline

If you are brave enough to dabble in texting, don't text a landline. Yes, there are still a few. Old geezers have them and professional offices (like mine) also have them. That's why you didn't get a response — you texted a real phone.

4. Don't Call Or Text Repeatedly

If you must call, please, not repeatedly. Yes, they got your call. Occasionally, people are too busy to respond immediately. Give it a rest.

5. Snail Mail = Not The Best

Stop sending things to your college student child, grandchild, niece, etc. They don't check their mailboxes. If you must, alert them with a text to check their box for something from you — if they think it's probably food or money, they will check it.

6. Don't Expect Handwritten 'Thank You' Notes

Really, don't expect anything in writing. Not even wedding invitations. Most people communicate via email and text, so they may simply text you instead of sending a letter.

7. Use The Digital Gift Registry

With weddings, new babies, showers and so on, unless you're giving money, get the people what they want. It's not rude. They had them back in the day. They just weren't online.

8. Don't Buy Maps (Use The App)

Use your GPS. It's on your phone. It's not hard. And it saves trees. No smartphone? Print out directions. It uses less paper than those bloody maps you can never fold properly. You can reuse it to print your next map, or whatever.

9. Get A Smartphone ASAP

Come on. Join the party. My father is 94 and reads on his Kindle (with the added benefit of being able to make the print super-big). It's a modern convenience like the flush toilet.

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Judith Tutin, Phd, ACC, is a licensed psychologist and certified life coach. Connect with her at drjudithtutin.com where you can request a free coaching call to bring more passion, fun and youth to your life.