Listening quietly, I know my friend is right. The lack of manners in our world has become more and more commonplace. TV sitcoms often accentuate this with remarks and behaviors considered funny from young people toward adults and authority at large. It’s become a world of “it's all about me!”
Amy Vanderbilt said, “Good manners have much to do with the emotions. To make them ring true, one must feel them, not merely exhibit them.” Manners affect the workplace, friendships and marriages. I have a friend whose husband has little regard for her feelings and takes for granted she knows what he wants and when, and should see to his needs. The relationship is fighting for survival.
In the workplace, employees are coming in improperly dressed, forgetting to use common courtesy manners, neglecting to return phone calls or other messages and using cell phones at will for both texting and conversations.
According to an ABC News “20/20” survey, however, 87% of Americans feel cell phones are the highest form of rudeness and disrespectful behavior, due to loud conversations, cursing, or interrupting conversations to text or take a call. Six of ten who participated in the survey said the bad behavior bothered them a lot.
So who is to blame for the bad behavior? Is it television or other technical gadgets like cell phones which makes instant access to the world available; or parents who are too busy or tired to correct their children? Or are parents are afraid of the ramifications should they punish their children for bad behavior? Is it related to the economy in a world where greed dominates and fear is high due to the loss of work? If you ask any group of people, the answer to that question will give you an equal amount of different answers.
I suggest 8 ways to improve rude behavior and this is a very incomplete list!
1. Always say “please” and “thank you.” This common courtesy leaves most people grateful.
2. Turn off the phone at the dinner table. Unless it is an emergency, the matter can be dealt with later, in private.
3. Be patient. Everyone has things to do and places to go.
4. Wait your turn. Cutting in front of someone who has been waiting, implies your time is much more important than theirs.
5. When someone is talking, listen quietly and concentrate on what they are saying until they are finished. Do not interrupt.
6. Remember to talk about other things instead of yourself. Your life is no more important than those around you and everyone has something to share.
7. Avoid using bad or offensive language. Like “please” and “thank you,” this is a common courtesy and most people are going to be grateful when you refrain from this behavior.
7. Remember that compassion and empathy is the best way to bring a good feeling to both your listener and yourself.
8. Show kindness to people without concern for race, color, religion, gender, disability or any other differences.
Manners do matter. Whether we are interacting with someone for five seconds or a lifetime, it makes a difference. Our behavior, including very basic manners, leave lasting impressions and have the potential of making or breaking a relationship. It’s important to remember that how we interact and regard people, is a direct light into our soul.