Modern Manners

post1Manners.  In many ways, it’s a lost art.  A quick scan of our society proves it.  Just dine in any restaurant and observe the families eating dinner: elbows on the tables, loud talking, messiness, and misbehaving kids.  On your drive home, you’ll likely encounter a driver who cuts you off in traffic or gives some creative sign language.

But that’s just the beginning.

Smart phones rule our world and cause us to toss the idea of good behavior right out the window.  Break-up’s happen via text, face to face conversations are interrupted by our fixation on constant updates from Facebook and Twitter, and people even carry on private phone conversations in public places….a joy for the rest of us to hear.

The Today Show aired a segment on Modern Manners this week and it got me wondering how I measure up when it comes to proper manners…..and if I’m teaching my kids to mind their p’s and q’s, as well.

What about you?  Do you:

  • send a written thank you when a kindness has been shown?
  • allow others to go before you (even when driving)?
  • hold the door open for others?
  • keep a napkin in your lap at mealtime?
  • clean up after yourself?
  • resolve conflict face to face, rather than in email or text?
  • keep your promises….even when it is inconvenient?
  • mind your words when you are short-tempered?
  • make eye contact and give a firm hand shake when meeting someone?
  • take the initiative to introduce yourself to new people?

In this digital age, here are a few new ones to consider.  Do you:

  • send group texts without considering if the recipients want the deluge of responses that will fill their phones?
  • post passive aggressive thoughts on social media to air your grievances?
  • pay more attention to your smart phone that the person standing in front of you?
  • share too much private info on social media?
  • put ear buds in your ears to drown out the world rather than politely engaging the people around you?

Want to know my biggest pet peeve?  It’s old school….a throwback.  Here it is: Smacking.  Chewing with an open mouth, chewing noises, and slurping all give me the heebee jeebee’s and make me long for all of us to have better manners.  Maybe I’ll grab a book on modern manners and give my family a little pop quiz to see how they fare.  (I’m sure they’ll love me.)  Who knows? Maybe we’ll start a trend that Emily Post would be proud of.  Mrs. Post said it best, however.  Check it out:

“Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others.  If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use.” 

Good food for thought in this modern age.

So, what about you today?  What is your biggest pet peeve with bad manners and what is one thing you strive to do to mind your p’s and q’s?

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