I don’t think my parents ever sat me down and said, “OK, this is how to have good manners.”
Perhaps a teacher might have brought up the topic during class in elementary school.
But, for the most part, I think I learned my manners from watching how my family interacted with each other and other people.
It is engrained in me to say, “Bless you!” when someone sneezes, open a door for another person (man or woman, young or old) and say, “Excuse me,” when trying to maneuver by other people. “Thank you” and “You’re welcome” are also courtesies that are just part of my everyday life.
I’m not perfect.
But, I guess it really bugged me when I went to a restaurant, and both times, going in and leaving, separate people opened the door for themselves but didn’t bother to hold the door open or at least prevent it from slamming in my face as I approached.
What’s up with that? It was as if they were oblivious to the people around them.
An elementary school counselor once told me she thought one of the major problems she saw was that children were lacking empathy for each other.
I’ve seen both. I’ve had 5-year-olds hold the door open for me, while adults didn’t act as though it was important.
When you enter or exit a door today, glance and see if there’s someone behind you. Hold the elevator for someone if they are approaching. Say, “Thank you.” Offer to help someone if they obviously are struggling with bags or boxes.
Just be nice. It will make the world a better place … at least it will for me.
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