The Civility Debate

by katiem2

Review and debate the topic of civility in our society is it alive and well or do we need to work on basic manners, common courtesy and random acts of kindness?

Times change and the manner in which we speak and interact with one another in the present time has many of us yearning for the fast and hard rules of the past. Remember the days when expected to “mind your P’s and Q’s”? Imagine a day with no need to overlook bad, rude or outright indignant behavior, that is right no turning your cheek to avoid confrontation. Have we become a rude anti-social society riddled with little narcissist who have no concern for civility?

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How to Build Positive and Civil Attitudes and Behaviors

Humans are Creatures of Habit

 

We've seen or heard the hard core nasty people yelling, screaming and hitting each other on the hot trendy reality shows.  Rude and outrageous behavior is celebrated in the media, on the television and Internet.  Remember the phrase,” you are known by the company you keep" or "birds of a feather flock together".

Anyone can make the choice to turn the other cheek, ignore it, call people out or simply set a good example using good manners regardless of those who act out mirroring what they think may get them noticed or perhaps cast as a reality star. 

Considered the impact of reality shows on our society or more importantly our youth?  Think about the escalating issue of bullies in our schools and social sites then imagine how to stop such incidents. Change is needed, “It all starts at home”.   Anytime you notice an outrageous reality show blaring in your home, open a dialogue and turn off the pollution.  Set a standard for your family as to the behavior accepted and expected, after all kids and most adults want to live up to expectations.  Together we can stop society from becoming desensitized to rude and violent behavior.  Human beings are creatures of habit, reinforcing healthy and positive habits makes a significant change. 

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Teach Kids About Good Manners and Civility

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. ~Emily Post

Allowing or simply over looking the reality TV mentality will send a loud message to your kids not to mention a significant impression. 

What you allow in your home sets a standard for everyone.  Rude characters fighting, screaming and lashing out at one another purely for entertainment or comedy conditions those exposed to be rude without empathy and socially challenged.

 

We are creatures of habit, what we are exposed to becomes apart of who we are and the nanner in which others treat us.

A Little Book of Manners for Boys

How Rude!: The Teenagers' Guide to Good Manners, Proper Behavior, and Not Grossing People Out

Stop Rude Behavior

Civility and Good Manners Builds Good Self- Esteem

The test of good manners is the ability to be patient with bad ones. ~Gabriel (Solomon ben Yehuda ibn Gabriel), The Choice of Pearls

In order to restore civility in our country we must first start at home.  

Making the choice to end a steady flow of reality TV characters in your home makes for a very positive step toward compassion, caring and civility.

Stop right now, think about the characters you invite into your home via television and online content, ask yourself if you object to one of your children mimicking the behavior of said characters?

It is really that simple.

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Teach Good Manners

Actions Speak Louder than Words

I admire and respect the work of Emily Post, a great example of proper behavior and manners.

I give those in my life a copy of Emily Posts Etiquette on their 13th birthday. This book makes the perfect party favor for blooming young people.

During my oldest daughters 13th birthday I gave her and all of her guest a copy of Etiquette as both a favor and activity.

The book was well received, the girls became engrossed with the books content. Party guest formed a circle in the middle of our living room reading for over an hour intensely interested in the books focus. This was proof to me that young people are hungry for good sound principles outlining the proper way of doing things. 

Emily Post's Etiquette

I hope to inspire you to provide the young people in the lives of your children with a solid resource and example from which to learn about civility and manners. There has never been a time where in the need has been greater.  I leave a copy of Emily Post the book of Etiquette setting on my coffee table for quick reference and a reminder that in our house we are civil well mannered people.

The Little Book of Etiquette

A Guide to Manners

Basic Principles for Manners and Etiquette

Old Fashioned Good Manners

  1. Saying please, thank you and excuse me
  2. Never intentionally embarrassing another person
  3. Never talking mainly about oneself
  4. No gossiping period 
  5. No prying for information from anyone anywhere.
  6. No asking sensitive or personal questions
  7. No staring at others, or looking away when spoken to
  8. No pointing at someone
  9. Dress appropriately
  10. No talking loudly
  11. No asking intrusive personal questions

The Goal Behavior

Naturally Well Mannered

In her book "Emily Post on Etiquette", she writes about a common slogan, "Practice Random Acts of Kindness"  that provoked her thoughts.

Acts of kindness and courtesy behavior need not be deliberate and planned.

Spontaneous acts of kindness are attributes of a person already well-mannered and courteous this persons natural instinct for courtesy is demonstrated in everything he or she does without thought.

The types of traits mentioned above are developed by a consistent method of learning and practicing good manners and behavior from the time a child is born. It becomes a way of life when it is expected and taught throughout life. 

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The Proper Way to Greet Another

Good People Skills and Manners.

How to Address Others, Impressive Them by Using a Proper Greeting

  • Smile at others.
  • Repeat the person's name introduced to you or those waiting on you, read name tag.
  • Remember others name!
  • Ask, "how are you" or "how do you do"
  • Answer questions with a positive and earnest smile
  • Respect social boundaries upon first first meeting.
  • Use phrases such as: "nice to meet you" or "lovely meeting you" and "it’s a pleasure"
  • Always sit and or stand with good posture and form.

Emily Post's Entertaining

Proper Dining Manners

The Rules for Dining or Eating
  • When dining place napkin on your lap.
  • Wait to eat until after the host has started.
  • If no host wait for everyone to be seated before eating.
  • Keep mouth closed when chewing.
  • Take small bites.
  • Eat quietly.
  • Say excuse me when leaving for the restroom
  • Keep your space clean and tidy.
  • Never criticize the food or mention what you do not like.
  • Sit walk and stand straight, maintaining good posture at all times.
  • Laugh, smile, giggle, and cry with dignity, never making a scene.
  • Make as little noise as possible in all situations. (when you eat, walk, talk, sit, run etc.) No slurping, chewing noisily, crunching, e.g. cracking knuckles.
  • Mobile Phone Etiquette: Do not be occupied with your phone while in the company of others.
  • Smile; be interested in your surroundings, never look bored at an event.
  • Dress appropriately.  It is rude to call attention to yourself such as wearing jeans to a wedding, dressing sloppy etc. etc.
  • Speak properly; pronounce words correctly using proper grammar. Never mumble or speak fast which is inaudible. Avoid slang, calling people by their pet or nick names unless you are close to them. Speak as grammatically correct as you can.
  • Never assume anything about anyone in terms of eating out together such as, they are rich, I do not need to pay for lunch,  He is a guy,  I should not offer to pay.
  • Never touch another person, their belongings, or children unless invited.
Having trouble saying no? Do you find yourself getting stuck doing things you really don't want? Learn the simple fool proof way to say no.

Dude, That's Rude!: (Get Some Manners) (Laugh & Learn)

Common Sense Manners

How to be a Good Example of Civility

Good Miscellaneous Manners

  1. Never talk money, unless being taught or in private family matters.  Example;
    "How much does it cost?", "What did you pay for that?", "How much do you earn?"  etc.

We can renew civility, etiquette and good manners!  Go ahead, make your mark on mankind!  Anytime you find yourself wondering Is Civility Dead and Can We Get it Back think about the power of your personal example.

Good manners and positive behaviors make others feel good, feeling good is contagious!  Go ahead start a feel good epidemic today! 

Do you think society needs to work on improving good manners

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Updated: 03/10/2016, katiem2
 
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Join the conversation regarding manners and civility in society today.


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katiem2 on 10/04/2012

Jerrico, Thanks for the vote for civility!

Jerrico_Usher on 10/02/2012

voted up!

katiem2 on 08/02/2012

Jo, Thanks for the feedback, although our manners may be a bit slacking in these fast paced times good to know all is well received from visitors from other countries. The thing about maintaining a high level of manners is to pass it on, teach the next generation. :)K

JoHarrington on 08/01/2012

I have been to Georgia and I can confirm that their hospitality is all that its reputed to be. However, I was made equally welcome in Colorado, Utah, Nevada, California and New York City.

It was in Nevada where I first heard American manners. That was the place I went in 2004.

katiem2 on 08/01/2012

Brenda, Oh my that's a serious issue, these kids will suffer for it...

Ragtimelil, I fully agree television is a really bad example and if we allow it in our homes we approve the behavior. I didn't have a TV in my home during my kids first 10 years, we have one now and yet rarely have it on.

BrendaReeves on 08/01/2012

I think manners is definitely cultural. Yes, Southerners still mind their manners. Although I visited here every summer as a child, and I was raised by Southerners, it wasn't until I moved here that I realized just how polite they are. The children are also well-behaved in restaurants and grocery stores. I haven't see one child run screaming through either of those places since I moved here over six years ago. In CA, parents just let their kids scream and run around in restaurants. I can't tell you how many times I almost got mowed down by a kid running in a grocery store.

Ragtimelil on 08/01/2012

I agree that TV contributes to desensitizing viewers. What is funny, really, about a dog biting someone in the face? Or scaring a kid to the point where he cries? I don't have a TV now and don't miss it one bit.

katiem2 on 08/01/2012

Jo, How cool to hear that. Have you ever been in the South (down south in America) as that is the most polite place on the globe. Glad to hear we are maintaining our manners to visitors.

JoHarrington on 08/01/2012

I've been to America twice (2004 and 2006) and, on both occasions, I was struck by how polite you all are. In Britain, 'you're welcome' is the response to 'thank you', but it's quick and curt. I didn't realise that until i visited your country.

'You're very welcome', said someone, so emphatically that I couldn't stop staring. I caught myself and just smiled. It really made me feel like she WAS happy to have helped, not just being polite.

That stuck with me. I've tried to emulate it ever since.

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