Saturday, October 23, 2010

Civility, Politeness and Good Manners

Civility, politeness and good manners are things that we teach our children.  We hope that if we can instill civility in our community, in our world, there would be less hatred, bullying, suffering.  P. M. Forni has written books on Civility.  The first, "Choosing Civility", includes 25 rules of considerate conduct.  These rules are very basic, and appear to be very easy to follow:

  1. Pay attention
  2. Acknowledge others
  3. Think the best
  4. Listen
  5. Be inclusive
  6. Speak kindly
  7. Don't speak ill
  8. Accept and give praise
  9. Respect even a subtle "no"
  10. Respect others' opinions
  11. Mind your body
  12. Be agreeable
  13. Keep it down (and rediscover silence)
  14. Respect other people's time
  15. Respect other people's space
  16. Apologize earnestly
  17. Assert yourself
  18. Avoid personal questions
  19. Care for your guests
  20. Be a considerate guest
  21. Think twice before asking for favors
  22. Refrain from idle complaints
  23. Accept and give constructive criticism
  24. Respect the environment and be gentle
  25. Don't shift responsibility and blame 
P.M. Forni also wrote a second book, called The Civility Solution: What to do when people are rude.  It's sad that we have to learn how to respond to situations like a salesperson ignoring you while she has a personal conversation with a co-worker; or a fellow driver giving you the infamous "finger".  How do we react to those rude people?  Maintaining civility, politeness and good manners in all respects can be quite the challenge.  I applaud those who can maintain their sense of cool when things heat up.  I will be picking up these books, and they look like they are easy reads.  I remember reading about etiquette. Now it's called civility. 

Professor Forni can be seen here, on YouTube"  Civility:  Commitment to Kindness

Let's be more civil to each other.  Let's put an end to rudeness!

~ Angela Gentile

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