You sent a text message, but it’s been an hour and your friend hasn’t responded. You become increasingly irritated and bitter with each passing minute. The more you wait, the more worried you become.
There are more methods to contact people than ever before, and the need to answer has grown increasingly accepted as those communication platforms have gotten tucked into our pockets and carried with us wherever we go. We appear to be able to respond at all times, therefore we “should”. Furthermore, our phones’ apps and social media platforms have embedded 24-hour communication into our daily lives, which is especially true with the advent of remote employment. Since a delay in responding to the employer reflects adversely on you, quick responses have been the norm in the office. So, whether it’s responding to work messages on Slack or posting a photo on Instagram and seeing the likes roll in almost instantly, “we’ve been conditioned into immediate returns,” says Michael Stefanone, a professor of communication at the University of Buffalo in the United States who specializes in social networks.
Meanwhile, if someone makes your blood boil the next time he/she fails to respond to your message, the best cure may be to simply put down the phone for a moment – being connected 24 hours a day, seven days a week is stressful enough.