*HowDoesShe is proud to partner with AT&T to bring you their 21-day “It Can Wait” challenge that aims to stop distracted driving and be more aware of others around us.
The 21-Day It Can Wait Challenge
Exactly 21 days ago, I embarked on a challenge I thought would be a breeze. At least one dozen times I had to remind myself to put my phone down while I was driving the kids to school, driving to get groceries, and even driving to a friend’s house a few blocks over.
According to statistics, 64% of drivers use their smartphones when driving alone. 36% of drivers look at those screens when passengers are in the car¹. The thing is, you are never really alone when you’re driving. McNeil’s tragic story reminds us of that.
It Can Wait
Six years ago, AT&T launched their It Can Wait campaign. It Can Wait means putting the phone out of sight, out of mind while driving. It means caring enough for those around us to put those phones away and drive distraction-free. It Can Wait sends a message to our passengers, to our children, and to other drivers that distracted driving is never ok.
Six years and counting, those three words “It Can Wait” have helped grow awareness of the dangers of smartphone distracted driving. They have inspired more than 5 million downloads of the free AT&T DriveMode® App, now available in Spanish and open to all carriers.
Take the Challenge
For 21 days I can honestly say I’ve completely changed my mindset about even having my phone nearby while I’m driving. Even if it was within my sight, I’d hear that little “ding!” of a notification and quickly grab it for a quick glance. It was alarming how often I subconsciously reached for that rectangular device, even when my kids were in the car.
Speaking of kids, did you know that if you share your promise or pledge with others, you are even more likely to stop using your phone while driving and more likely to speak up to others? After taking the It Can Wait pledge, 4-in-10 members asked a friend or family member to change too. When you care about someone, you want them to stay safe too.
Like most of you, my kids are my life. From day one of the challenge, I told them I was not going to use my phone anymore while driving. I told them to scold me if I did, and they had to scold me a few times. But I am so glad I told them. Every day, they keep me honest. If I forget for even a second, they’re right there, chiming in to remind me.
If you love them, take the pledge.
Just Think of These Three Simple Words
It. Can. Wait.
AT&T’s 21-day challenge made me ask myself a very interesting question: why do I feel the need to pick up my phone and hit that power button so often?
At every stop sign and every red light, my hand unconsciously reaches for that phone. The world we live in today has groomed us for immediate feedback, instant gratification, and a insatiable need to be “in-the-know.” We need to know the latest news update, the latest social media notification, the latest whereabouts of celebrities on Twitter.
None of those things are so important that they can’t wait. Stop the car, pull into a gas station if you must, or just simply make it wait.
The one thing that helped me successfully complete this challenge and that will stay with me forever are the three simple words: It Can Wait.
If you haven’t yet, take the It Can Waitin this post 21-day distraction-free driving challenge. See how it changes your life. Hey, it could even save a life. (Read Shauna’s comment in this post.) Did you take the 21-day challenge? Tell us how it went!
*AT&T sponsored this post.
1Cellphone survey with 1,003 respondents conducted by Braun Research. Survey fielded August 18-23, 2015. Nationally representative sample (ages 16-65, drive and use smartphone apps).