As an expert in etiquette and manners, my daily conversations often involve someone telling me about something they saw and “how rude it was”. Then the conversation usually goes down the path as to why? Why do people behave the way they do? What has happened to our social skills? What is going to happen when all of this rudeness just gets to be “normal”? (Note: Learn good manners here.)
Usually, my reply is “Well, today people don’t have time to be nice. And today, people don’t know what to do in everyday social settings to try to be helpful. And, unfortunately-people are not being taught good manners.” Are any of my replies true? Of course they are. Why are random acts of kindness overruled by bad behavior?
Mother, May I wants to rain on this parade of bad behavior. Please help us promote kindness and address those around you who are displaying rudeness. The old adage that our mothers would say is true: If you sprinkle a little sugar on someone, they will respond with a sweet act. We are happy to report that schools are starting to understand the importance of rewarding good behavior, rather that publishing the bad.
To help all of you grow into a better person, here are some random acts of kindness to choose. One random act of kindness a day never hurt anyone, and while you’re at it—try for three a day!
1. Send a card and seeds to a neighbor (whose garden you admire).
2. Invite an acquaintance out for coffee. (And be prepared to pay-remember the MMI rule, whomever reaches out for the invite, will reach for that check.)
3. Send a handwritten thank-you note.
4. Pay the toll for the car behind you on the interstate
5. Hold the door open for someone.
6. Ask your mother for one of her favorite recipes.
7. Let another car take that parking spot.
8. Let the person at the supermarket checkout with only a few items go ahead of you.
9. Share an umbrella with someone who needs it. (Check out the yellow umbrella movement.)
In today’s hypercompetitive world, knowing to take some time to look around and find a “Good Deed” to do takes some good intention. Finding that intention inside yourself, to share random acts of kindness with co-workers, family, friends, and complete strangers, takes some effort. My neighbor was brought to tears by opening a door for a disabled person…that person turned to her and thanked her with a poem. Imagine the impact that poem had on her, and obviously her opening that door had a huge impact on the stranger.
We all have a story like that. On days when it seems like the rain just won’t stop, we come across someone who sprinkles some sunshine and helps us move forward, with a warmer heart and usually a big smile!
Please share with us your moving story…it can make a change in someone’s day.
Demetria and Lisa
Co-founders Mother, May I