Do you ever place your cell phone on your desk or on the table in front of you when you talk to someone? If the answer’s “yes,” researchers say that one move could prevent you from making new friends!

In experiments, researchers had strangers engage in casual conversation. In some instances, there was a cell phone on the table – in others, no cell phone was present. Then, the strangers were asked to rate the interaction – and if they felt they connected with the other person. The result? When a cell phone was on the table, the volunteers reported much lower levels of trust, and empathy, and felt their interaction was of a lower quality than the cell phone-free volunteers.

Why are cell phones friendship blockers? Experts say that if you have your phone out, it sends the message that you’re not 100% interested in the person you’re with. And you’re ready to drop them the instant your phone flashes or beeps. So, if you’re talking to someone – stash your phone out of sight. Otherwise, your phone could end up being your only buddy!