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Do you know the number? This really isn’t a trick question, and it’s not one that we think of very often. If you really needed to make a call, and you didn’t have access to your trusty phone, or the internet, could you call the telephone number that you wanted? I know that I’m going to show may age here, but “back when I was growing up” you had to REMEMBER phone numbers if you wanted to call someone. Maybe you got a fancy address book to write them down, or the ones you called all the time, you memorized. Ok, maybe I need to explain even further (bear with me, if you remember this yourself…for some people this is foreign territory). When we wanted to make a call, you had to input each number – area code and 7 digit number. Whew! Call it finger memory or whatever you will, if you called the number enough times you were able to remember the order your fingers moved in and you were soon dialing the number from memory.
In today’s world, everything comes with a touch of a button or a voice command. “Siri, phone Melinda”. “Alexa, call my husband”. Push the recent calls button on your smart phone and look for the name you want – click it and you hear the ringing start. You put a phone number in your contacts list, and never think of it again. Handy, absolutely! Going to get you through in tough times, maybe not.
I should know the number
Last week I’m at the doctor’s office and they are verifying information. “And your emergency contact is still…” and she quickly reads of the number. I think to myself – I don’t know! Who knows anyone’s phone number anymore. So I beg a moment to get my phone out, look it up and the slightly annoyed receptionist nods her head that they had it right. I felt silly for not knowing it, but such is life today. 2 days later I’m standing in line behind a person trying to pick up an order. They can’t find it under her name, so they ask what phone number it was called in with. She starts saying that her husband called it in, and she’s getting out her phone and looking up her husbands phone number. On the one hand I felt vindicated, see she doesn’t even know her husbands phone number. They I got to thinking, this is really stupid, I can still remember my childhood home phone number all these years later but we have become utterly dependent on our phones for reaching any individual we want.
In Case of Emergency, know the number
Now I will say, that my part of the country has been hit hard by floods in the past couple of weeks. Hurricanes are looming, and natural disasters can strike at any time. If you couldn’t use your phone, how would you get in touch with the people important to you to let them know that you were okay? Let’s pretend that you suddenly got sick and had to get admitted to the hospital. How would you quickly let an important contact know. I think it’s time that we admit that a back up plan might be a good thing here. Having 1 simple sheet of phone numbers that are most important to us, in an easy to find area, could really become a life saver some day. If you have a landline, putting simple list of numbers next to it could be helpful. If you don’t have a land line, maybe put it near the area that you always keep your keys (or another object that has a forever home) so you will easily find it. I also decided to make a smaller list that fits inside my wallet, so that when I am out I will also have easy access to important numbers. And if you are feeling really motivated, work on getting 2 important numbers committed to memory like we did in the old days.
I hope that you never need to access your written list for emergency purposes. But if you ever do, I’ll be happy that you were prepared and able to move on to more important things that trying to find a phone number of a friend or loved one. Here you will find a PDF link to a blank Phone List that you can use for yourself. Go ahead and put your address on top of the sheet. When we are experiencing something traumatic, making things as easy as possible will help you when your mind goes blank. Then fill in your list with the numbers that you think would be most important. Maybe it’s just family and friends. You can also include a few contacts that can watch your home when you need to be gone unexpectedly. Perhaps its the kennel or pet sitter that can help you out short-term. Whatever you think would help you know the number that would be most helpful to you. Please feel free to share this post with any friends or family that you think would be helped by having this phone list as well.