What is the purpose of this call? What action do I need to take?
When we lived in Sydney, and I was working from home I would frequently get a 5.30pm phone call from my partner as she left work and was in the car on the way home. This would often throw me into a panic as I would suddenly realise that I needed to go and look at the Post-it note she had left for me at 7am.
On it would be a couple of simple household tasks, hang out the washing, a quick vacuum, simple stuff that I had often forgotten to do.
The phone call would go on and all the time her arrival got closer and closer, cutting short my time to finish the chores.
I often wondered why she was calling me when I would see her in 30 minutes or so anyway. We would talk about our days and just stuff in general, all the time I was thinking “I’m going to see you soon, why are you calling me? What is the purpose of this call?”
Of course, the purpose of the call was just a chat, a loving check-in, a “how are you going my lovely partner” call. I often failed to see this as I was consumed in thinking about the tasks I had to complete.
I frequently hear my partner on the phone to her sister or mum. They just talk about stuff, all kinds of stuff in what appears to me to be a rambling hour long, sometimes longer download about everything. Everything from family matters right through to a description of a new piece of clothing. These are regular phone calls, regular long phone calls, sometimes, very long phone calls. I know what the purpose of these phone calls are, they are purely to check-in with family members they love.
This made me think about how men interact on the phone but also face to face. “What is the purpose of this phone call?” “Do we have to arrange something, pick a time to do something.” “Can I borrow your chainsaw?” There seems to be an action attached to virtually all the interactions we as men have. It feels weird when a man calls you just for a chat, it is so infrequent, well to be honest it never happens. Unless the man has been seriously ill or had something major change in his life, men never call each other for a chat. Texting is also another great way for men to avoid just chatting to each other.
So maybe it might be an idea just to pick up the phone and call a man in your life and see how he is going. No need to arrange something or have a purpose more than just a chat. See how you go, just don’t call him between 5pm – 6pm as he could be busy completing some chores with a looming deadline.