Tag Archives: Happiness

Don’t Be Rude When You Can Be Kind!

What happened to common courtesy and dood manners?

They used to be the norm – but, are now practically non-existent.

When I observe simple acts of kindness and respectful behavior it is almost startling because it is such a rare experience.

The anonymity of social media seems to have created a breeding pool for poor behavior that is spilling over into daily actions for the majority.

Being on the receiving end of rude behavior is extremely unpleasant – so, let’s not be guilty of the ones who are being rude.

It’s Time to Dust Off Your Manners

Don't be rude - Good manners show respect

There is no excuse for being rude and disrespectful. It is selfish and immature behavior that reflects a complete lack of concern for anyone except yourself.

My theory is that rude behavior begins at home. When children are allowed to be rude and disrespectful to family members (including their parents), it becomes a way of life when dealing with people in any situation. It’s the only behavior they know.

It’s time to change!

Unfortunately, we cannot control others’ behavior, but we can control our own.

You and I can choose to be kind and courteous to others – family, friends, associates, colleagues, clerks, service agents, and strangers. YES, I’m talking about EVERYONE.

Being polite and showing respect for others will never go out of style (maybe buried under a pile of “you know what”) – but never lost unless people accept perpetual rudeness as a way of life.

Respectful behavior that is fueled by kindness is the foundation of a good life and a joyful society.

. . . and it starts with you and me dusting off our manners and displaying common courtesy even single day.

To pique your memory, I have compiled a list of common courteous behaviors from years past. They are not difficult to perform, but if they are not currently part of your behavioral patterns, it may take time and practice for them to become automatic, as they should be.

  • Get in the habit of saying please and thank you!
  • Say hello and goodbye when entering and leaving a room or group of people.
  • Stop swearing in public.
  • Say, “I’m sorry” when you bump into someone.
  • When meeting someone for the first time, smile and introduce yourself.
  • Give an elderly or handicapped person, or pregnant lady your seat on the bus or subway.
  • Cover your mouth when you yawn, sneeze, cough, burp, etc. and say, “Excuse me.”
  • Put your phone away in public! Don’t text or scroll through messages while walking, driving, or during a face-to-face conversation with someone. Phones should be used when you are sitting/standing alone and you will not disturb anyone else.
  • Hold the door open for those behind you or for anyone who may need help.

Let the other person enter the building, the room or the elevator first.

  • Promptly R.S.V.P to any invitation.
  • Send thank-you notes (preferably handwritten) for dinner parties, gifts, etc.
  • Acknowledge and accept differences of opinions (even on social media) – acknowledgment is not agreement.

Introductions

Don't be rude - say hello politely
Credit-phototechno-iStock
  • Always introduce people to each other.
  • Make introductions immediately
  • When you are being introduced, listen carefully and remember names.
  • Respond – “It’s nice to meet you.”
  • Ask a question to let them know you are interested in who they are.
  • When leaving, say, “It’s nice to have met you.”

Polite Conversation

  • When someone says hello – smile and say hello back (or be the first to say it)
  • Listen attentively without interrupting – let the other person finish before you speak.
  • Be kind and respectful in your response to others.
  • Consider all opinions – you don’t have to agree, but be willing to listen.
  • Respond to questions with kindness and respect.

These are only a sampling of good manners. There is so much more but these are a good place to start.

Model the behavior you would like to see in your children and would enjoy when in the company of others.

We usually get back what we put out into the world. Let’s start putting out kindness and respect! That is today’s challenge! 

Are you up for it? I hope so.

Related Posts:

From the Reader’s Digest –  50 Little Etiquette Rules You Should Always Practice

Age in Place – Are You Prepared or Is There a “Rest Home” in Your Future?

Age in Place
Image by JacobLund@iStock

You are worried about what will happen to you as you get older.

You do not want to lose your independence.

Living somewhere else is not acceptable.  You love your home. 

It is your right to age on you own terms and in your own way

Everyone must plan for the future and how you will live as you approach your 50s, 60s, 70s, and beyond.  The decisions you make today can affect your health, comfort, and safety during those years.

Many people are making  the decision to “age in place.”

Age in Place

The CDC defines this as “the ability to live in your own home and community safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income, or ability level.”

At first glance, it seems like the ability to age in your home is simply a matter of keeping yourself healthy and active for as long as possible. That is an important piece of the puzzle, but not the only piece.

Choosing to age in place isn’t just about your home and your ability to remain active. It includes your connections and involvement with everything in your community.

Familiarity with your community/neighborhood gives you the confidence to move about and to engage with friends and neighbors.

I also allows for easy access to familiar health-enhancing resources like doctors (and other service providers), parks and walking trails, book club, and yoga class, etc. 

Risks of Isolation

The benefits of staying at home are important, but there is a downside.

A new study at Brigham Young University shows that prolonged loneliness and being socially isolated is the health equivalent of smoking 15 cigarettes a day. While friendships and meaningful relationships with others support our immune system, reduces our stress levels, and can actually reduce the risk of developing dementia.  

The author of the study and psychology professor, Tim Smith, said that the United States is facing a possible “loneliness epidemic,” revealing that more people live alone today than at any other time in recorded history.

The study’s co-author, Julianne Holt-Lunstad, states that,

Loneliness should be considered a serious health issue. Just as one starts planning financially long before retirement, we should also consider our social resources in planning for retirement.”

 It is easier to work on preventing loneliness than trying to work your way out of it.

These social resources of the choice to age in place include planning how you will stay connected and involved in your community.

Do you have a family – siblings, adult children, and grandchildren – nearby? Do you have both long-term friendships and a way to meet and make new friends?

If not, you can consider a service like Silvernest that provide ways to meet like-minded people – in this case, to make a roommate match. Having someone living in your home with you helps to create a new friendship and provides a safety net should you need help.

Home Adaptations

Now (not later) is the best time to plan and execute changes to your home that will keep you safe and comfortable.

No one likes to look at things that scream, “You are getting older,” like ugly grab bars in the bathrooms. Thank goodness the design of these features has come a long, long way. When you are ready, take the time to shop around. You can find things that keep you safe and are also aesthetically pleasing.

You may find that it’s the little things that limit you – like kitchen utensils or the height of your toilet. These can be easily fixed. There are great alternatives that people of any age would enjoy.

If you aren’t already familiar with them, check out the universal design features of OXO kitchen products, or bathrooms from Kohler that are designed well without feeling old.

Projects, like leveling floors from room to room, living on a single level, and widening doorways, are all important adaptations, but they are also more costly. This is particularly true of homes in older, desirable neighborhoods.

Experts advise that if you plan to age in your home, make adjustments while you are working and have an income to support the costs. Also, the disruption caused by home improvements is easier to live with when you aren’t recovering from an accident or struggling with a health problem.  

Take an inventory of your home. Look for anything that seems annoying or limiting to you now – even in the slightest. This will only be exacerbated as you get older.

Technology for the Ages

If you have aging parents, stay on the lookout for the developments in technology that will help them stay connected and remain as independent as possible.

Apps are available for caregivers to keep you informed on their care and activities.

We live in a “sharing economy” that makes it possible to have almost anything delivered to the front door.

Ten years ago it would have been unimaginable to get into a stranger’s car or to have a roommate as you age, but companies like UberLyft and Silvernest have made it the norm – and these are services you will rely on more as you get older.

The world offers many advantages that early generations couldn’t have imagined as they aged.

The most important advantage you have right now is your planning window to age in place. 

With a bit of thought, you can make plans that support both your physical and mental health and keep your home the vibrant and safe place it is today.

This is an adaptation with permission of the original article published at Silvernest.com.

Related Topic:  7 Foods that Accelerate Aging