Are good manners dead?
According to a recent survey by researchers from the Public Agenda group, Americans believe we are becoming less gracious as a society.
It’s hard to pinpoint the exact cause, but the rise of technology could be partly to blame.
For example, thanks to social media, we now have less face to face contact with others, meaning our manners have started to decline.
Whatever the cause, it’s clear we need to take good manners seriously.
Here are 13 habits of well-mannered people we should all adopt:
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1. They put their phones down when they are having a face to face conversation
Texting someone else or browsing the internet when hanging out with someone in person is disrespectful.
Polite people turn off their notifications and give their conversation partner their full attention.
If they need to take an urgent call, they will discreetly retire to another room and resolve the matter as soon as possible.
2. They always let you know when they’re running late
Polite people respect your time.
They will never stand you up, and will let you know in advance if they will be late.
In the unlikely event that they forget an appointment, they will be mortified and beg your forgiveness.
3. They say “Thank you” often, and they mean it
Well-mannered people are gracious and grateful.
They acknowledge everyone who helps them out, from the waiter who took their coat to their teammate who helped them meet a big deadline at work.
4. If they have a problem with someone else, they communicate it directly
Respectful people do not hold grudges or resort to passive aggression when working out their differences with someone else.
Instead, they resolve grievances using healthy, assertive communication tactics.
5. They give appropriate compliments
Polite people do not fawn over others, but they know how to give a compliment.
They know that compliments should be sincere and discreet.
They do not use false flattery or shallow praise.
6. They never interrupt
Talking over other people is extremely rude.
Well-mannered people always wait for their turn to speak, however keen they are to make their views known.
7. They remember to ask about your work, family, and other important aspects of your life
When you’re in the company of a polite individual, conversation will be a two-way street.
They won’t bore you with monologues about their life and interests; they will make you feel special and important.
8. They don’t swear excessively
There’s nothing wrong with an occasional swearword, if it is appropriate to the type of conversation and general atmosphere.
However, as a rule, swearing is vulgar and gives a poor impression.
9. They are tidy eaters
Well-mannered people know how to use cutlery, keep their elbows off the table, and chew with their mouths closed.
10. If they make a mistake or cause offense, they are quick to apologize
No one is perfect.
Respectful people acknowledge their mistakes, and offer to make amends where possible.
If they sense they have hurt someone else, they will be keen to issue a sincere apology at the first opportunity.
11. They treat everyone with respect, regardless of status or occupation
A truly polite person knows that a person’s character is more important than their social status or salary, and acts accordingly.
They treat everyone with kindness, because they believe that every human has a right to a basic level of respect.
12. They maintain a positive attitude
Life can be difficult, but subjecting others to your bad moods or complaints is bad manners.
You have every right to ask others for help or to explain why you are upset or angry, but acting grumpy all the time will make everyone uncomfortable.
13. They do not gossip about, or judge, other people
Well-mannered people appreciate that everyone has their own story and faces a set of unique challenges.
They are slow to judge, because they understand that it is impossible to know what someone else is going through.
They also hate to gossip, regarding it as a pointless and malicious practice that can cause a lot of distress.
Manners cost nothing
Never underestimate the power of good manners.
A reputation as a caring, positive person is one of the best assets you can have.
It will help you win friends, keep your relationships strong, and advance in your career.
This week, why not make a special effort to show others the respect and courtesy they deserve?