Etiquette Intentions:

Three  R’s to revolutionize your  summer

Summer Etiquette

by Jan Goss

Oh the joys of summertime! Well, joyous if you are in the right season of life. It depends. Summer can be filled with warm, exciting ‘fun in the sun’ memories or its joy can be smothered by miserable memoirs of heat on top of hot flashes! Yes, it depends on our season of life. I have personally experienced both!

When my children were small, we used to learn a manner a week. It was fun; a game we all played together. Best of all, it worked … at least for then. People would stop by our table in restaurants just to comment on how well behaved our children were. They indeed were well behaved and well accepted. As they hit adolescence, I think they outgrew that well behaved part. However, life has a way of bringing us all full circle. I have to say that learning the “three Rs” had a significant impact in making their circle complete.

Intentional etiquette … now that is a concept! You may not want to learn a manner a week. That’s alright. However, you can revolutionize your summer by setting your etiquette intention to incorporate three Rs into your home and workplace. It is a simple intention and focus that can cause radical transformation in our world. What would your life look like if you and your loved ones learned to keep it Real, show Respect, and take Responsibility this summer?

R #1: Keep It Real

One common misconception concerning etiquette is what I call the “pinkies up” syndrome. No one enjoys the company of an arrogant, pompous person. You know the type; the name dropping, condescending, phony person. People discern immediately if you are sincere in your civility. Etiquette is not about having a “pinkies-up” attitude. It is actually quite the opposite. True civility is being considerate of others. You can be your authentic self and remain respectful within that framework. If you are fun and outgoing, let that shine! If you are more reserved, be who you are with class.

R #2: Show Respect

Respect positions you safely to ensure your best possible life. A home or workplace that is void of respect is not a happy place to be. Intentional respect is a large part of success. Making up one’s mind to be respectful is an intentional act we can choose every day. Choosing respect is as simple as putting on your favorite dress. It is a reflection of you and the way you decide to think and judge. What can you do this summer to show some self respect? How can you elevate the respect level at your home or place of work? When intentionally applied, the powerful R number two will revolutionize your summer … intentionally.

R #3: Take Responsibility

Ouch! What a boring, ugly word responsibility can be! That is until we uncover the amazing sense of pride and accomplishment that is its reward.  Compensate yourself for your reliability this summer. Ask a trusted friend to nudge you gently when they see you may miss your mark. Some things are simply our responsibility. We can’t do it all. However, we can step up to the proverbial plate and do what we can.

Do you have a temper as hot as the Texas sun? Own that fire; yet use that intense passion to create the change you desire in a respectful manner. Fire out of control is a destroyer. Do you need to make a phone call, call a family meeting, or extend an apology?

Are you one who needs a little kick in the pants to take care of responsibilities? Find a way to create a fire underneath you. Be honest about where you have dropped the ball. Get it done and then let yourself off the hook! Bask in the feeling of satisfaction and self-respect that taking responsibility produces. Choose to be more aware of the many responsibilities you take care of on a daily basis. Be kind to yourself!

We cannot give away what we do not possess. It is impossible to pour fresh, clean water from an empty cup. Our world is thirsting for civility. Civility is the cultivation of habits and personal living that are an important part of the success of a community, whether personal or professional. Keeping it Real, showing Respect, and taking Responsibility will fill our cup so we can have something of substance to pour out of our vessel. Let’s make this our best summer yet by being the change that we want to see in the world!