Social Etiquette

05/04/2017 15:37

Is social etiquette still alive and well? For me, common courtesy needs to be far more common. Gone are the days when one displayed gratitude, a polite thank you and well-timed acknowledgements. It seems that these attributes have greatly lessened. It's as if the "all about me generation" has taken over. I'm very happy teaching, guiding and helping people to improve their lives, often, free of charge. I make no conditions. I do however expect to be thanked. Seems to me that being grateful, expressing thanks and being courteous is no longer considered a "must have".

In my opinion, it is always appropriate to display gratitude when one is being helped. Recently, I helped a couple of people who required guidance regarding their personal brands. I did this free of charge. We spoke for about 30 minutes and in one case I followed up with a thoughtful e-mail. I never received a note of gratitude from either of these individuals. I don't believe they intended to appear ungrateful or rude. It's as if showing and acting gratefully is just not fashionable.

I'm very happy to be of assistance to those who need it. In fact, helping others, for me, is a privilege whether I'm being paid or not. Perhaps I'm too fussy, too conscious of the small details that enable us to truly connect with each other. To a degree, I'm talking about going the extra mile. An online survey conducted by Michigan State University and Indiana University, states that the UK is 47th in the world empathy index. Therefore, I ask myself is it more empathy that is needed in order for people to be more polite/thoughtful? I think this would encourage some people to employ greater thoughtfulness.

I firmly believe that expressing gratitude, being thankful and displaying appreciation is a necessary and essential part of what it means to be human. In fact, I also believe that it's our duty to communicate with each other in a polite, thoughtful manner, even when we are not in the frame of mind to do so. So simply put, behave in ways to others you'd like them to behave towards you. Yes, I know it seems obvious to do that, but clearly not obvious enough for many. Perhaps it's to do with modern culture...

Perhaps reminding people about the relevance of politeness, will engender more attention to an aspect of being a decent human being. These days, I rarely take stuff for granted. This is probably due to growing up in a different time, before the Internet, mobile phones and social media. Networking wasn't what it's now become: a normal part of everyday life. If we can encourage more awareness of social skills, then we can expect those skills to improve. If indeed mirroring is an effective way to encourage others to replicate better behaviour, best we all begin now.

-Some tips:

-Increase level of empathy

-Be gracious - always

-Express good manners as a matter of course

-Sometimes a simple thank you is all that's needed

-Treat others as you like to be treated

-Be thoughtful of others

-Don't take others for granted