As technology and pandemics change our behavior, here are 7 etiquette rules to get by respectfully in an ever-changing world.
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Now that the new year is starting to take shape, it’s interesting to see the habits forming around us. While we might adapt just fine to change, it’s important to make sure that we keep our manners in check. So take a look at these tips to help you navigate 2023 with grace and style.
Take those ear pods out
With ear pods being very practical and easy-to-wear, they’re also easy to forget. There’s nothing worse than meeting up with people who’ve still got their pods firmly in place. Even if they’re not actually listening to anything, the person they’re communicating with might be wondering if they’re being heard. So to shed any doubt, take them out!
Reply to invitations and important messages
While technology has made life easier to some extent, it also means that there are a myriad of ways to communicate. Between WhatsApp, email, messenger, and social media among others, we can get bogged down with messages and requests. It’s hard to keep up with all the constant pings, but remember to respond to the ones where friends are offering help or inviting you to events.
Look people in the eye
This is a basic one, but many people have their heads in their smart phones when they’re supposedly having a conversation — and this doesn’t just apply to teens! So if you’re chatting with someone, have the courtesy to put any distractions out of reach and focus on the person in front of you.
Watch those voice messages
Voice notes can be very handy — after all, you can get a lot more said in a quick voice note than writing out a message. However, it’s important to remember that people might not always be able to listen to a lengthy voice note when you need them to. So if you’re sending an important voice message, maybe send a quick message explaining the subject matter.
Dress for the occasion
COVID played havoc with our closets. With people working from home, smart office wear has been replaced by comfortable sports wear — or even pajamas. Of course, in the grand scheme of things, what we wear shouldn’t matter. However, our clothing choices are a great way to show the importance we give an occasion.
For example, we wouldn’t show up to Mass in our pjs, as we want to show respect to the Lord. So if we’re going somewhere that deserves our efforts, than take the time to dress appropriately.
Don’t get too snap happy
Thanks to our smartphones we can take endless photos. However, this isn’t necessarily a good thing. Sometimes we’re so busy trying to capture a moment, we don’t actually live it… and we might get in the way of those who are trying to their best to focus on what’s going on.
It’s also annoying when people take photos of other people’s kids and then share them on social media without permission. Remember, only post photos that feature your own family (and even then, respect what your kids might want, or not want, shared).
And of course, don’t forget those “pleases” and “thank yous”
As life becomes more and more automated, it’s easy to forget to show our gratitude. So remember, especially when accompanied by impressionable young ears, to always say “please” and “thank you” when needed. (I stubbornly say “thank you” to Alexa when I ask her to play me a song, even if my kids think I’m crazy!)