Civility and manners

  • Civility and manners,  Kindness quotes,  Politics

    The challenge

    “A part of kindness consists in loving some people more than they deserve.” —Joseph Joubert It’s so easy to be nice to like-minded friends and others who are kind to us. Yet the real test of our character is how we treat the folks who aren’t members of our fan club — especially those who hurt us or disagree with our viewpoints. I purchased the lawn sign in this photo because the message seemed like a breath of fresh air in our country’s contemptuous political climate. And I’m sorry to admit that, in the privacy of my home, I’ve said some nasty, judgmental things about others whose opinions differ from…

  • Civility and manners,  Friendship and relationship advice

    “You look marvelous!”

    “I can live for two months on a good compliment.” ~Mark Twain Yes, flattery will get you everywhere. As reported in Medical Economics, researchers confirmed that “people respond positively to flattery, even when they know the flatterer has an ulterior motive.” Better yet, compliments can make a motivational difference. When a supervisor praises our efforts at work, for instance, statistics show we’re more likely to experience higher job satisfaction and stay in the position longer. At the same time, when other people tell us we look nice or that we’ve done a great job, we tend to think positive thoughts about them, too. Paying a sincere compliment is an act…

  • Civility and manners,  Friendship and relationship advice,  Health & wellbeing

    Bullies and boundaries

    “When you set healthier relationship standards in your life, some people will take it personally. That’s their issue, not yours. The distance you need isn’t against them; it’s for you. It’s a boundary, not a grudge.” ~Steve Maraboli Bullying is demoralizing, and it doesn’t just happen to kids on the playground or in politics. In our daily lives we sometimes encounter folks who don’t play fair. Social bullies aren’t necessarily loud or obvious, and sometimes they don’t even recognize their own patterns of bullying. But you know ’em when you see ’em. Social bullies are the ones who need to have the upper hand — in a variety of ways.…

  • Civility and manners,  Communication

    Who really said that?

    “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” – Henry Thomas Buckle (1821 – 1862), English historian  Not unlike gossip, many of the popular quotations we can easily pull from the Internet are misattributed or taken out of context. It’s worth doing some research to determine the origin and authenticity of the material. The more we spread misinformation, the harder it is to pinpoint the truth, the real source. Just like gossip. Today’s quote is often attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt. But apparently scholars can’t find anything close to it in any of Roosevelt’s writings or speeches. According to an in-depth piece in the Quote Investigator, the…

  • Choices and decisions,  Civility and manners,  Friendship and relationship advice

    The art of the apology

    “Apologies require taking full responsibility. No half-truths, no partial admissions, no excuses, no rationalizations, no finger pointing, and no justifications belong in any apology.” ~Cathy Burnham Martin I admire people who know how to apologize. Admitting an error takes courage, and is never a sign of weakness. It might feel easier to preserve your dignity by kicking your mistakes under the rug and acting as if they never happened. Or blaming someone else. Or making excuses. But refusing to admit you screwed up comes across as arrogant or uncaring — and makes you look small. Worse yet, it could also damage a relationship beyond repair. Apologizing requires maturity, class, and…