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Manners and Etiquette: 16 Rules for Being the Most Polite

Are you tired of rude people? Instead of trying to change their bad habits, be the change you’ve been preaching. Practice good manners and set an example for how people in your community should act.

Manners and etiquette

How are you on manners and etiquette?
You don't have be spoonful of sugar to be considerate and respectful to other people. Common courtesies are not just thing of the past. Remember these polite things the next time you are bouncing down the street to and fro singing with an umbrella.

girl with umbrella

Manners and etiquette

1. Open doors

2. Use phrases

3. Help elderly

4. Clean streets

5. Be patient

6. Exercise awareness

7. Buckle up

8. Don't stare

9. Teach children

10. Airport consideration

11. Elevator etiquette

12. Set the example

13. Be on time

14. Turn off phone

15. Shake hands

16. Follow up

The etiquette for jogging around Tokyo Imperial Palace will be different than the etiquette you show a stranger in the line of the supermarket. However, if you practice some of these basic rules of etiquette, they will not go unnoticed.

Why is Having Good Manners an Important Virtue in This Day and Age? Because People Want to Believe that Humanity as a Whole is Worth Caring For

A citizen with good manners is one that cares about the well-being of other people and puts the group over the individual. By showing people that you are someone with virtue, you restore other people's faith in humanity as a whole.

1. Open the Door for Others

It doesn't take that much time and everyone appreciates an upstanding citizen. Little things like opening the door for complete strangers can pay dividends. People will appreciate the gesture and remember your face. If you have the healthy mindset that you usually see people more than once, karma will reward you in the form of a new friend. Good manners always get rewarded sooner or later.

black and white open door

Don't stop until you got your manners straight. Next, are the only three words you have speak to be polite.

2. Three Key Phrases

"Thank you", "Please", and "Sorry" are way underutilized common courtesies that you should use more, especially with your family. You often take people you know for granted, thus forgetting to use some of these simple phrases. If you understand the etiquette rules to life, you will remember to use these three phrases liberally. These words are common courtesy; you cannot overuse them.

blonde girl with hands on cheek smiling

You can say thank you all you like but you are never going to hear it from someone else without doing something nice and helpful.

3. Help the Elderly

Helping the old lady across the street may be a little old fashion; but if you see an old person in need of help, give them some preferential treatment. They have less time left on Earth than you do and they appreciate your help more than other people would. Don't expect them to return the favor, but be aware than they will want to, more than likely.

helping hand for elderly

Don't forget to give Mother Earth a hand too. The streets need you more than ever. Can you here that? They are calling your name saying clean me.

4. Keep the Streets Clean

picking up trash
Pick it up if it's yours

The hallmark for good manners is to dispose of your own waste. Take care of your own trash instead of making it a problem for everyone else. A selfless person is one who cares about the environment they live in. Care for your city, care for your country, and care for Earth. Recycle what can be recycled in order to do your part for the environment.

Clean streets are fine; but what about the people that drive them during rush hour. You know… road rage.

5. Be a Patient Driver

road rage woman
No road rage

No need to be in a rush to get everywhere. Be considerate of other drivers and stop for all pedestrians. Just because you are behind the wheel and you think nobody can see you anyways, it is no excuse to just do whatever you feel like. There are consequences for road rage and rushed driving. Let people pass you if they are in a hurry. Allow people to merge into your lane. Only use honking to alert others when they are in danger or unaware of a possible threat.

Mind your manners. Other shopper don't appreciate it when you come by pushing yourself by on a skateboard.

6. Be Aware of Your Surroundings in Public

supermarket skateboard guy
Wrong is wrong no matter how cool you are

When you are walking on the sidewalk with some friends, do you all tend to block the entire path? Do you become so safe in each other's company that you completely disregard everyone around you? It is inconsiderate to others when you aren't aware of your surroundings. By distracting yourself with your smartphone or talking to a friend, you aren't paying attention to what's going on around you. Pedestrians, bicycles, and drivers don't appreciate it.

7. Always Buckle Your Seatbelt in Someone Else's Car

Seriously, if they get in an accident, don't become a contributing factor to their misfortune. Sometimes having good manners means taking a second of your busy schedule to help others and that can be as simple as buckling your seatbelt. Not only is it for your own safety, but for the well-being of others. Don't make them have to tell you to buckle your seatbelt all the time.

8. Avoid staring

Restrain yourself from staring at someone and making them uncomfortable just because of the way they look. There are many people who are self-conscious about themselves enough as it is. Don't make them feel worse at staring at them just because they look different than you. Sometimes the urge to stare is too much to resist when you see something really outrageous. This is why you should learn how to be stealthy in your approach, as to gain an eyeful without offending the other party.

9. Teach Good Manners to Your Children

This is the best form you can possibly take with the rules of etiquette. Passing on your good manners to your children is raising them the right way. Teach them how to respect and be considerate of other people. Chances are they won't learn these from their friends growing up. You have to be the one who sets a good example for them.

10. Be Especially Considerate at the Airport

There is a higher likelihood you will bump into people with an abnormal amount of stress at the airport or a hospital. Don't make their lives any harder by crowding their space or being rude. Go about your business in an efficient manner and focus on making things as pleasant as possible for everyone. You should spend as little time in crowded and stressful places as possible. Research some tips and strategies to make your next trip at the airport go as smoothly efficient as it can. Airports are only a stressful experience if you don't plan accordingly and take note of the experience for next time. You should spend as little time in crowded and stressful places in the first place, if possible.

11. Etiquette for riding the elevator

Wait until everyone gets off the elevator before getting on and let people off the elevator before you. Hold the doors for others before you board. A packed elevator is only a few seconds of discomfort, so just deal with it. It's uncomfortable for everyone, so try not to make waves. Remember that good manners are most important in situations where other people are often rude or forget their manners. That way, you remind them of the way they should act.

12. Set a good example

Let your actions come before you words in every situation. Be a small talker and a big doer. Don't be that loud, obnoxious person that everyone is embarrassed to be around. Set an example for others by speaking silently so that people will want to hear what you want to say. Even though you are a quiet person, the impact of what you say will equal the things you do if you are considerate of others and their tolerance for loud noises.

13. Always Be On Time

This is more of a lesson for the modern adult rather than children. Why do some people have such trouble keeping their prior commitments and keeping to their word? You know the type: always late, always makes the same excuse, says sorry, does the same thing again next time. Punctuality is a highly undervalued trait in people these days aside from the workplace. Shaming should be encouraged when it comes to those who are constantly tardy. Otherwise they will keep us waiting for them. Nobody likes that person who always shows up late, yet for some reason we tolerate them anyways.

14. Turn Off Your Cell Phone

Or at least put it away in the presence of others. It shows your lack of undivided attention, and a lack of respect for who you are currently with. I'm sure you were annoyed at some time where your close friends paid more attention to their phones than your conversation. Social manners have degraded with the recent advancements in technology to the point where we no longer pay attention to the things that matter in life. Cell phones weren't meant to have this effect on society. Now we have to deal with rude people who don't know when to turn off their cell phone for benefit of everyone else in the room.

15. Shaking Someone's Hand

Introductions are a crucial part of social etiquette manners and it is very important to be able to shake someone's hand firmly without crushing their bones. A good handshake, whether you are male or female, is imperative in showing confidence in a job interview or even just meeting someone new for the first time. Make sure your posture also matches your firm handshake, and make sure to look them straight in the eye. This is common courtesy and shows you were brought up with good etiquette and manners.

16. Following Up

Some of us forget the small pleasantries after a decent conversation or after someone has helped us through a difficult time. A simple letter or message thanking someone makes a big impact, and many people seem to forget their manners when it comes to following up. Checking up on someone should never be bothersome, but rather shows that person that you care about them. If someone cared about you, you would want them to keep in contact with you often, right? Make it a habit of writing ‘thank you' notes and buying small gifts showing your appreciation of your friends and family or even someone who provided excellent service to you. Sometimes you will find that the thought matters even more than cash in certain situations.

By Kacia Nall

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