While most of American society has become pretty casual when it comes to manners and etiquette, there are still necessary and sometimes unspoken “rules” that we should all follow. No matter what career you have, what lifestyle you lead, or what friends you hang out with, everyone can appreciate considerate manners: they are never outdated. I have narrowed it down to a basic list of do’s and don’ts that can be applied in many areas of your life. Maybe you will be surprised at the etiquette you already display, and perhaps you will find a few areas to improve in.
1. Technology. Phones, while incredibly useful, seem to have become the biggest downfall when it comes to manners. It is something we are all guilty of; taking calls and texting during dinner, business meetings, movies, conversations,etc. Bottom line, just don’t do it. If there is a message or call that you need to return, politely excuse yourself and take care of it. When you are spending time with friends or family, or at a work meeting give the people that are there with you your attention, and save your phone time for later.
2. Lateness. This is the hardest one for me, and is something that I am continually working to improve upon. Too often, lateness is excused, when really it is just you saying that your time was more important than other people’s. I have been making it a goal to leave margins in my schedule so that I have extra time when I need it.
3. Use Please and Thank You. Yes, we are taught to say “please” and “thank you” in preschool, but so many times as adults, we forget the great power behind those words. Everyone is always in a hurry, moving 100 miles an hour, forgetting to show appreciation to a waitress, barista, family member, or the stranger that held the door open for you.