By Jaron Zanerhaft & Katie Funk
Ever since the digital revolution began, texting has gotten a bad rap. Readers too often find themselves unable to interpret the tone and mood of a message. Without face-to-face communication, texts are often misunderstood and texters are left confused, resulting in disproportionate consequences. Friendships have ended, relationships have dissolved. In reaction, the children of the cellular age have forged a texting language to solve this problem. Here is your guide.
How to: add a friendly tone to a boring message
The go-to fix for a cold sounding text message is simply to add letters to the ends of your words. It sounds ridiculous, but this simple trick really lightens up your conversation. But I would reserve this technique for friends and family only; don’t include this in your next email to your boss.
Before: “Hey watsup”
After: “Heyyyyy watsuppppp”.
How to: subtly imply you’re busy and can’t engage in a long conversation
Opposite from the first example, you’re now going to want to keep things short. And add periods; the classic “Hi.”, as an alternate to “Heyyy” immediately sends the message that you’re not up for a texting marathon.
How to: show interest in the conversation
While you might not be laughing in real life when you send a text, you’d be surprised as to how much a simple “lol” or “haha” can add to the flow of a conversation. I like to think of it as a replacement for the in-person smile without having to add the sometimes awkward smiley (see below).
When to: add the smiley face
This can be a very controversial decision because, for whatever reason, the smiley face at the end of a text is often a sign of flirtation. When texting someone of the opposite sex, you must be very careful about how you use the all-powerful smiley. And if you’re feeling extra confident, the wink face truly takes it to the next level.
The time of day matters
Daytime: If you’re receiving texts from a potential love interest during the daylight hours, take this as a good sign.
Dusk: It means the texter might be interested in a hookup. The before-the-night check in implies he or she wants to see you that night and is probably looking for some sort of romantic interaction.
Alternatively, you can also use this to lighten the blow of a harsh statement.