A little faux pas to the left, a little misstep to the right – Part 2

Some social etiquette rules are pretty obvious: Don’t interrupt people, don’t offer your opinion unless a person asks for it, don’t double-dip your chip, don’t drunk dial an ex, and don’t lick the icing off an Oreo cookie and then put it back in the box and leave the grocery store.

In last week’s blog, I touched on some less obvious social etiquette rules based on a social skills study we conducted at Queendom. Here are a few more of our findings:

Misstep 4: Refusing to check your attitude at the door

Stat:

  • 14% will bring their bad mood with them, no matter where they go.

The right step:

  • Timing is everything. Whether you’ve had a bad day at work or you’re upset with your partner, don’t hash out your grievances at inopportune moments. Essentially, if you’re in public or at a social occasion, don’t start an argument with someone, and if you’re in a bad mood, leave it at the door. You may not feel like being civil, but taking your anger or frustration out on some hapless victim is completely unfair.

Misstep 5: Mishandling praise

Stat:

  • 15% of people refuse to accept compliments, and actually refute them.
  • In contrast, 4% gobble up compliments like candy, and use them as a segue to their favorite segment, “All the reasons why I am so awesome.”

The right step:

  • Accept compliments gracefully. If you are someone who is uncomfortable with praise: Simply say “Thank you” when people compliment you and leave it at that. In a world where it’s so easy to criticize, be thankful for times when people go out of their way to pat you on the back. They probably see something wonderful in you that you have yet to recognize.
  • If you’re someone who basks a little too long in other people’s admiration: Try a little bit of modesty – and I don’t mean false modesty. Accept compliments with a genuine, “Thank you,” and if you’ve achieved something with the help of others, make sure to share the praise. Hollywood is overflowing with ginormous egos, but even the best of the best know to thank the “little people” who helped them get where they are.

Misstep 6: Assuming punctuality is optional among friends

misstep 6

Stat:

  • 24% of people think it’s OK to show up late when meeting up with a friend.

The right step:

  • Respect other people’s time. If you are in the habit of showing up late, realize that as wonderfully patient as your friends may be, there’s only so many times you can show up an hour late and expect them to forgive you. If getting to places on time is a struggle for you, find ways to be more efficient. Set your watch half an hour ahead; shower earlier in the day so that you spend less time getting ready; plan out what you’re going to wear ahead of time; if you have errands to run, get up earlier and take care of them right away. Bottom line: A lack of punctuality is a lack of respect, and sooner or later, your friends may just see it as such.

Misstep 6: Offering constructive criticism in an unconstructive way

 

Stat:

  • When giving someone negative feedback, 53% of people criticize the person rather than the behavior.

The right step:

  • Focus on the behavior you hope to change. While character traits are difficult to alter, specific behaviors can be modified. For example, instead of saying, “You are such a lousy parent,” say, “I disagree with the way you reprimand our kids because yelling scares them.” Or, instead of saying, “You never spend any time with me anymore,” say, “I miss spending time with you.” Remember, what you say may not be as important as how you say it.

Insightfully yours,

Queen D

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