2010 05/05

Email has made me mute

The other night I was click-click-clicking away on my laptop, as I usually do once the kids are in bed, and my husband said to me, “You do A LOT of email.”  Huh, I guess I do.  I was kind of taken back by his comment because I never really thought that I did A LOT of emailing but, the more that I think about it, I would have to agree with him.  I love me some email!

The truth is that, whether good or bad, I would gladly choose writing an email over calling someone most days.  If I want to just “check-in” with someone and chat casually, then hand me the phone and dial those numbers!  I actually love chatting on the phone with friends, when I have the time.  When I have no other distractions.  But, when I have limited time (which is most days), when I have a thousand other things that I need to get done, I will avoid the phone call at all costs.

It’s not that I don’t love talking to you, it’s just that I need to squeeze in as much correspondence as I can in as little time as possible.  It’s business.  It’s me being efficient.  It’s nothing personal.  And that, my friends, is the problem.

I get so wrapped up in emails that I often forget that not everyone appreciates an email.  They actually like to spend time casually chatting on the phone.  Huh, go figure.  They want to hear my voice, although often hoarse and distracted, to feel that personal connection with me.  Ok, I get it.

The other problem, I’ve forgotten how to talk “business” on the phone.  Really.  I love that I can collect my thoughts in an email.  I can re-read it to make sure what I’m saying sounds right.  I can choose my words wisely without those awkward phone pauses.  I’m not tripping over my thoughts and I’m not getting distracted (I have a really big problem with multitasking).  I can do all of this at midnight while you are sleeping or when I have five minutes as I wait at a train crossing.  I can start the email, go rock my sick child, and then come back to finish that email.  I can’t do that stuff when I’m on the phone with some PR rep.  At least I don’t think they would appreciate it if I did.

So email, while such an amazing tool in my life, has started to cause these noticeable not-s0-positive side effects.  And I’ve especially noticed them lately as I’m finding myself on the phone with potential sponsors for Gleek Retreat.  Fumbling over my words, pausing as I collect my thoughts to answer the question they just asked me.  It’s so frustrating.  The minute I hang up the phone I think to myself, “Ahhh, if only I could have responded to all of that through an email.  I would have sounded awesome!”  But the point is that I wouldn’t have “sounded”.  Those sponsors are looking for a personal connection to this thing called Gleek Retreat and my voice is that personal connection.

Email may have made me mute but Gleek Retreat is definitely making me find my voice again.

What are your thoughts on email?  Are you a big email corresponder or do you crave that phone connection?

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  • Totally agree! I am much, much, much more likely to email rather than call! :)

  • I have no phone cravings whatsoever. None. I did corporate sales for Nextel and people called me all day, every day – and night – with things they needed IMMEDIATELY and 10 years later I think I still have PTSD from it :) It wrecked me and even though they are ‘personal’ calls – I still don’t like being on the phone.

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