|Emily Post, courtesy of The Charm School Gazette|
|Amy Vanderbilt, courtesy of Cookedbooks.blogspot.com|
Now, I'm not completely naive about the ways of the world. I'm sure that people in the earlier decades had their faults as well and that I am seeing things a little bit through rose colored glasses, and I know that there are people today who are kind, generous and courteous (in fact many of them are my friends ;) However, it seems to me that the culture of decades like the 40's and 50's, for example, strived for good manners. Conversely, today, we are constantly bombarded by examples like "Jersey Shore" or "Real Housewives" and frequently witness the public destruction of marriages and the glorification of general bad behavior.
|Mary Brooks Picken, courtesy of What-i-found.blogspot.com|
All that being said, one of the things I plan to strive for this year is to do my (small) part to make my little world an environment of warmth and courtesy. I believe the first step towards making a change is to start with the only thing you can control...yourself! Here are a few changes I plan to begin with:
- Patience is a virtue - This is by far the hardest for me. I think fast, move fast and generally prefer to do everything myself. I'm sure this creates anxiety for people who have to deal with me, so I am making a concious effort to slow...down..
- Acknowledge your fellow man - Some days I walk around in a complete haze. Friends later tell me that they waved at me as I drove by, or someone will have to repeat themselves because I didn't notice them the first time. I'm sure there are many opportunites in my day to day life to connect with others that I miss because I'm in my own little world. I plan to make more of an effort to remain in the moment, to smile and reach out to others.
- Remember to say thanks! - I'm actually pretty good at remembering my pleases and thank yous (probably because I'm such a stickler for it with the kiddos) but I don't often remember to send out thank you cards. I think they are such a lovely gesture, and I so enjoy getting them myself, that I plan to make sure I write up my list early after the holiday season and get them in the mail!
- No more cussing- I've honestly never been much of a cusser. In fact, I did not utter my first "bad word" till I was in my 20's (I blame The Man!) Truthfully, I dislike the harshness of the way cuss words sound and I never curse in front of the kids, so I'm hoping it won't take too much effort to remove them from my vocabulary entirely ;)
Hugs and Smooches,