Can a product which was created to enhance social interaction actually be used to avoid socializing? Absolutely! The advancement of the smart phone has done just that, so let's take advantage of it. If you need to get out of a social situation, or feel like you are in danger, there are several ways you can fake a phone call.
Download an app.
If you have a smartphone, and you said, “I bet there’s an app for that.” You’re right. There is. Go to the app store for your device and type in, “fake a call.” You will find that some are created to play jokes and others are more serious. Check the functions and reviews to see which one works best for you. Be aware that some free apps may involve ads which could make faking calls in the heat of the moment a little problematic. Consider whether it is worth it to you to spend the money and purchase the app.
- iPhones apps allow you to set everything from who is calling to the wallpaper on the screen in order to look entirely convincing.
- Androids have apps which allow you to initiate fake calls by shaking the phone, tapping the power button several times, or using the proximity sensor.
Play around with your new app.
Learn about all of the features your app offers and make sure you understand all of the functions of your new app. If you downloaded a free version and feel that it is not adequate, upgrade and purchase the app. If you are having too much trouble using this one, you can always delete it from your phone and download a different one.
Experiment with your app in a safe space.
You want to make sure that you are comfortable using your app before you find yourself in a situation where you need it. Try faking phone calls by yourself, then take it to the next level and attempt to fake a phone call in front of a friend. See if they can tell that the call was not real. If you don’t have the need to fake a call for a while, be sure to revisit the app on occasion for a little practice.
Update your app when necessary.
Periodically, updates will be available for your app. You can check back with your store and see if you have an alert for an update. If you have set your phone to update automatically, this will be done for you. Be sure to review the changes any time updates occur and reeducate yourself with any new processes.
Pretending You Received a Call
Keep your phone handy.
Most of us probably do this anyway, but make sure that your phone is within reach. You never know when you may need to use it for your escape. Always keep it in the same place, so you know exactly where to find it. That could be a particular pocket in your pants or your bag.
Acknowledge a fake alert.
Since your phone is not making any noise, you will want to take the time to pretend you notice it buzz or light up. Take a second to look at the screen as you would normally to see who is calling and decide whether to answer.
Silence your phone.
Now that you have your phone in your hand, you will want to silence the ringer and alerts. If your phone rings or sends alerts while you are pretending to talk on it, your cover will be blown. It is helpful if you already have your phone set up with no vibration in silent mode. This can be done in your volume settings.
- iPhone has a silencing switch on the top left corner about the volume controls. You will see a small amount of red underneath the button to confirm that it is in silent.
- Android requires a series of steps from the settings screen to get to “total silence” mode. Swipe from the top of the screen using two fingers, then swipe down again to get to Quick Settings>Do Not Disturb>Total Silence. If you anticipate you may be faking a phone call to make an escape, you may want to set your phone to total silence in advance.
Greet your fake caller.
Answer the phone as you normally would had you seen the name of the caller on caller ID. Picture in your head who it is you are talking to and it will help you find a tone of familiarity. Greet them as you normally would, whether that is a simple, “Hey!” or calling her by name, “Hey Morgan! What’s up?”
The easiest way to do this is by doing very little. Avoid the urge to fill in the silence by talking too much. You don’t have to create a full dialogue here. Remember, a large part of talking on the phone actually involves no talking. Listen, and feel free to follow it up with quick reactions which also make the call seem important. Sound invested in the call.
- Faking a call to get out of a socially awkward situation could be as simple as :”Really?””Oh, no!”
- ”Oh, no!”
- If you are faking a call because you feel you are being followed or are in danger, say things which imply that the caller is in range to help you.”Oh, I see you!””You’re so close!””Yeah! I’m almost there.”
- ”Oh, I see you!”
- ”You’re so close!”
- ”Yeah! I’m almost there.”
Match your body language to the conversation. If you are pretending that something the caller is saying seems surprising, make sure that is reflected in your face by raising your eyebrows. Acknowledge the person you are trying to avoid with a quick nod or hand gesture to suggest an apology and that you need a minute.
Make your escape.
Pretend to hang up your phone as you normally would. Make an apology to the other person and let them know that you have to leave. Don’t worry about making excuses regarding why you have to go, and don’t take too much time talking about it. It is urgent and you really need to leave, so leave.
Pre-planning an Escape Route
If you are going to meet someone and you think you may need a way out, ask a friend to call you at a specific time. Make sure this friend is someone you can rely on to ensure they actually call. Now you only need to fake the content of the call and not the call itself. You can set up some code words in advance to let them know if you need more help or everything is okay.
Set an alarm.
Go to the settings on your phone and set an alarm for an estimated time when you may need a reason to excuse yourself. Choose an alert tone which could sound like a ringer. The alarm will continue to go off until you acknowledge it, just like a ringer would. Turn off the alarm and continue with your fake conversation.
Record a voicemail for yourself.
Use someone else’s phone to leave yourself a voicemail, or maybe even have them leave it for you. The recorded message should be only one side of the conversation, so that you can speak to yourself when you use this fake call tactic. To use this option, pick up your phone, go to your voicemail screen and play the recording. The benefit to this plan is that you already know what the conversation is, and can practice it in advance. If the room is quite, the other person will also hear a voice in the phone.
- If you are truly in danger, don’t fake a phone call. Call 911.
- Continue to be aware of your surroundings while faking a phone call if you feel unsafe.