We all have to agree that we want to teach our kids the manners and respect for others that will put them on track to be accepted and well-liked in their lives.
These are essential to being successful in life, so let’s show our kids how it’s done by setting a good example:
- Acknowledge others – Say “hello” to people when you enter a room. Say “goodbye” when you leave. People love to be acknowledged and they’ll remember who did.
- Use eye contact – Looking someone in the eye lets them know that you are actually talking/listening to them. Personally, I won’t hire a professional if that person doesn’t look at me – I’m just picky that way.
- Pay attention – With all of our daily distractions, giving your undivided attention to a person shows that you are interested in what they’re saying. Kids – especially – love the attention and it gives their self-esteem a boost. Do this for them and they will pay it forward.
- Be grateful – Think about all you have and not about what you don’t have. You will realize that you are very fortunate, which in turn will make you happy.
- Be kind and caring – Say something nice to someone every day. Offer your help. Do a good deed. Care for an elderly person. It will all come back to you tenfold (and make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside).
- Smile – Curve your mouth upwards and smile. It makes you look nicer, more approachable and more attractive. Try it … you’ll like it.
I have spent well over a decade repeating these rules to my kids and I think my persistence has paid off to an extent. People tell me that my kids are well-mannered, caring individuals – even when I’m not there to remind them. My goal is to continue to set a good example for them and hopefully they will have mastered these qualities by the time they’re on their own. In the meantime, I will keep reminding them to say “please” and “thank you,” to practice their eye contact and all of the other things above. I’ll do it for another decade but the rest is going to be up to them.