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Posts Tagged ‘Manners’

old hands

This weekend I had a front row seat to see how someone’s thoughtless, childish, rude behavior crushed two senior citizens.

Although I’ve known this for a while, you can get a perfectly clear picture about someone’s character from watching how they treat the elderly.

Just because a person’s skin is wrinkled, their vision has dimmed, and they no longer move with any speed, doesn’t mean they should be treated with less respect, care or kindness.

It also doesn’t mean they are stupid. Don’t assume just because someone is aged that their mind no longer functions.  A lot of them are as sharp as tacks, and those who assume otherwise are the ones I think aren’t hitting on all cylinders.

Getting old sucks.

Even if the mind is willing, the body is often lagging behind.  Things that used to come easily now are challenging and life seems to move both so fast and so slowly, making it difficult to keep up.

Despite their physical challenges, so many of the elderly have such great stories to tell, such wisdom to offer. Those who shun them or treat them disdainfully are hurting themselves the most because they are missing out on time spent with these walking time machines.

If you want to check out someone’s character, take them to a senior center or have them interact with a group of elderly. It will tell you more about them than hours spent in conversation.

Despite delusions that it won’t ever happen to us, we are all going to be old someday. It’s how things work.

I don’t know about you, but if that saying  “what goes around comes around” is true, I hope that those who are kind to the elderly now in their youth will receive similar treatment in their old age.

As for those of you who treat the elderly like something nasty stuck to your shoe – just remember there will be some self-centered, cruel person out there who will offer you the exact same treatment someday.

Be kind and patient with our senior citizens. Offer them encouragement and a helping hand. Ask them about their life. Engage them in meaningful conversation. You’ll be glad you did.

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Please.

Thank you.

You’re welcome.

Simple enough words, but far to few people use them anymore.

I was reading through one of Zig Ziglar’s enewsletters the other day and it was talking about manners. Mostly how people today lack them and view them as unnecessary.

I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve thanked someone and instead of  “you’re welcome,” I’ve received a grunt, a head nod or a blank stare.

How many times have we said “could you do this?” and barked orders around at home. Even with our loved ones, why do we not say “please” or “thank you.”

It’s not like the words are hard to say. They are small. Simple. More than that, though, they are essential.

Good manners separate us from the animal kingdom – and I have to tell you, I’ve had dogs with more manners than some people I’ve encountered.

Good manners can also open doors. If you’re stuck in a rut with a career or relationship, try applying good manners and see what wondrous changes take place.

I realize with all the technology available today, when people are condensing their lives into 140 characters of information, it’s easy to leave out niceties. Easy, but not always what is right.

Wouldn’t it be great if we all behaved like ladies and gentlemen? If we opened doors, offered sincere thanks, treated others respectfully?

I for one am making a mental note to practice what I preach going forward. I hope you will, too.

She Who Is Digging Out Her Etiquette Book

 

 

 

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