Friday, February 9, 2018

Right now you feel anxious because you’ve sent an e-message (email, text, etc.) and you haven’t yet received a reply. But don’t worry, you’re not alone with feeling this way.

Face-to-face conversation response time is 200 milliseconds and, with e-messages being nearly instantaneous, we’ve fooled ourselves into believing that e-message response times should be the same as face-to-face. (Spoiler: They’re not.) Additionally, with text messages now the prevalent communication medium for Americans under the age of fifty, there’s never been more e-messages coming at us faster. So how do we put our e-message anxiety into check?

1. Recognize that you’re projecting your own set of priorities and expectations onto the recipient and that those two mindsets will never be identical.
2. Understand that part of your anxiety stems from a fear of rejection and that delayed responses do not mean that you’re being rejected or are unliked. (See Point #1).
3. Adopt a new mindset for e-messages. Think of them as a note left on your kitchen counter where the subject matter was important enough to write down, but not important enough to warrant a phone call or an immediate call to action.

E-messages aren’t going away and neither are their delayed responses. To stay sane, it’s time to reframe your thinking.

Factual Friday brought to you by Chad Harvey