A fun children’s book that still sits on my bookshelf. It’s titled, Manners Can Be Fun! By Munro Leaf. Leaf introduces the book by declaring that a major triumph of life for a child (and adults) is to discover that there is pleasure in tasks and chores if only one can see it.
The first chapter sets the scene by stating that having good manners is really just living with other people pleasantly. “If you lived all by yourself out on a desert island, others would not care whether you had good manners or not.” But when others are added it matters a lot.
The book humorously shows why living without others would not be fun. It’s up to us to make things pleasant and fun for people we are with even as we enjoy our own activities.
As we define ourselves with our manners, knowing and practicing etiquette rules creates a more socially acceptable person and the impressions you make will be lasting.
You may feel satisfaction when making an apology and having it accepted and appreciated, feel pleasure in seeing that a door held open for you is done out of courtesy, and feel happiness when being with friends who appreciate a good joke now and then. Each of these experiences are part of the fun of living in the world with others.
Realizing that your relationships will be better when you use good manners, your confidence in yourself will grow stronger, and your ability to be mindful and present will increase.
When you show respect, you earn respect. Your good manners add to your delightful and charming personality and help keep you happy. This “you” will no doubt be motivated to help others be their best and forgive them when they are not.
Your children and those with whom you work will no doubt be influenced by the example you set in living an etiquette-ful life. When you refrain from over-reacting, conflicts are more easily assuaged. Your sympathy and understanding will go a long way in meetings and family gatherings and your presence will act as a magnet and inspiration to others to be the best they can be. People will think highly of you and isn’t that one of the most fun parts of life?
Good manners and etiquette help you stay composed and calm in any situation. You can breathe easier when facing any personal challenge of health or circumstance as an outcome of living the faith that you’re doing all you can to be present and available to others who need encouragement during the same times.
Also, “goofing up” in whatever you’re doing can be remedied by the strength you’ve gained from practicing your etiquette skills during any kind of failure. The qualities and attributes of your good manners will see you through any hard time and can even change or reverse the effects of bad events dramatically.
And finally, they help you remember that any struggle you face, no matter how hard, can be eased by the inner sense of propriety in knowing you are being the best person you can be in any situation
What could be more fun than this? Living in the circles of friends, colleagues and family while having and holding your own special and unique demeanor is part of living a beautiful life.