Spring Cleaning Negative
Etiquette Habits

Spring Cleaning

When we think of spring cleaning it is usually in the context of deep cleaning spaces in our homes.  What better time of year to work outside that box and sweep away any negative etiquette habits that may be holding you back?

Identifying Negative Etiquette Habits

You can’t correct something if you don’t know it needs correcting.  Consider situations you’ve experienced and reflect on how they could have been handled differently.

  • You attended a networking event and didn’t meet anyone you wanted to follow up with.
  • After a conversation at a party, you noticed that some friends gave you the cold shoulder.
  • You were very much offended when your brother asked about the promotion you did not receive.
  • You felt a little left out of conversation at a recent dinner party.

Each of the above situations can be helpful in identifying a negative habit.  Examining situations that have affected you is not done to find a reason to kick yourself for doing something wrong, rather to seek an opportunity to find ways to handle certain circumstances and situations a little better.

Social interactions can be tricky sometimes.  You want to stay on top of your game, but one slip-up or one comment made by someone can cause your emotions to take over and trip you up.  The best method to remedy this is to put habits in place that keep your actions and reactions consistent.

Spring Cleaning Those Old Habits

Once identified, it’s time for spring cleaning the habits you want to be rid of.  The best way to be rid of one habit is to replace it with a more beneficial one.  Following the list above, you may consider these replacement habits:

  • If you have a habit of attending networking events and not proactively introducing yourself to other attendees, begin setting a goal to meet a certain number of new people before you leave the event.  Begin with aiming to meet three new people and move up from there as your confidence grows.

  • Attending parties is great fun, but if you have a habit of imbibing a little much and being offensive, you may find your friends less than amused.  Consider seeking help through professional counseling or Alcoholic Anonymous.  Or try changing your habit by allowing yourself one alcoholic drink during the evening and then switching to soda or water.

  • Taking full responsibility for your own actions and decisions is not only a mark of maturity, but also etiquette-ful.  It indicates you know your own mind well enough that the questions and opinions of others do not offend you.  You can understand and appreciate the individuality in each of us.

  • Conversations ebb and flow during a gathering of people.  Practice the habit of recognizing this and filling in the gaps by always having a list of conversation topics on the tip of your tongue.

Out with the Old

It takes time to form new habits.  However, once you’ve identified a habit you wish to replace with another, it is easier to catch yourself and use the new habit instead of the old one.

Spring cleaning your negative etiquette habits provides a time to reflect on the person you wish to be.  It’s only when you know the answer to this that you can decide what personal habits and practices will make you into that person.

This year, take your spring cleaning to another level.  Tackle those household chores with vigor, and then turn your efforts within.  Let your best self blossom!

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