In today’s world, it has become a rare occurrence to witness chivalrous acts or come in contact with individuals with manners. We remember the little things like strangers holding doors for us or saying “please,” “thank you,” et cetera. It has been commonplace for manners and courtesy to be seldom occurrences. We have replaced face-to-face communication with digital communication and its imperative that we restore manners in our society. We have seen posts about random acts of kindness and individuals having their “faith in humanity restored,” but why has common courtesy become reduced to very little? My mother’s side of the family is very Southern, so “Southern Hospitality” is something that has become ingrained in me. In middle school, I took three years of Cotillion training, also known as etiquette training. I am not saying I am the epitome of model manners and etiquette because I will be the first to say that I am not, but, for me, manners are all about effort and trying to be polite and courteous. Here are some tips to help resurrect the dying art of manners:
- Hold doors for people. Whether you are male or female, hold a door open for others. I know opening a door is not rocket science, but little gestures like this can brighten someone’s day and is a way for you to honor someone.
- Say “please” and “thank you.” These are two words that are at the foundation of any manners lesson. They are simple, yet can make a huge impact in conversation. Using these words so respect and honor, which are two traits everyone can benefit from.
- Watch your body language. Rolling your eyes, not facing someone fully when you greet them, and many more non-verbal cues can not only deter someone, but can also give someone a pre-determined view of your attitude. You know the saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words?” Well, body language is worth two thousand.
- Do not use your phone at the table or while talking to someone. Nothing is as rude as having a texting or using your phone while having a face-to-face conversation. If you need to use it to show the individual something or to look up something relevant to the conversation that is fine. However, being preoccupied with your phone while the person is talking to you, it makes the individual feel you do not want to listen to what they are saying and does not show the person honor, it shows disrespect.
- Do not gossip or divulge other people’s information. So, this one is easier said than done. Gossiping puts others down and is not only rude, but it showcases the person who is gossiping in a poor light. Furthermore, having a conversation with someone and then going to someone else and spilling everything that was said is a no-no. Confidentiality is key in any situation. If someone tells you something, that does not give you the green light to tell others.
There are a myriad of manners that can be brought up, but these are the basics. By practicing these manners daily, you will feel better and that will rub off on those around you. In today’s world, we remember those that are well-mannered. Although manners should be commonplace, we all know they are not. In order to keep the art of manners alive, we must showcase manners and etiquette in life in order to set an example. You may also get remembered in the process.
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