Be socially dazzling!

Be on time! Chronic lateness spells social death and you may never know why you got dropped! Be late in business and it is the kiss of death!When was the last the time you thought about manners or etiquette? Chances are unless you’ve attended a formal event or are raising small children, the subject hasn’t crossed your mind.

 Good manners are not complicated, but they do make life so much sweeter.

So here is a guide to modern manners and being socially dazzling.
 
Be on time
Punctuality is easy and tells people you value them. While occasional delays can happen to anyone, close family and friends will forgive you if you are hardly ever late.
 
As for chronic lateness, it is disrespectful. It says ‘your time is worthless – so you can wait for me.’ If you are late often, you will simply not be popular.
 
Tardiness for work or an interview can be the kiss of death. As the old French proverb goes, “people count up the faults of those who keep them waiting.
 
Say thank you
Darlings, no one owes you their time, hospitality, or a gift. So thank them. For a gift, special treat, or a job interview, write a note. You can send elegantly-composed email these days in place of a regular note.
 
A young friend used to pooh-pooh my suggestion that she send thank you notes for job interviews — until she tried it. She noticed that she got noticed. Lesson learned!
 
And what hostess, who took the time to plan a delightful dinner, doesn’t appreciate someone who took the time to send a note of thanks?
 
Be discreet
This is simple and not as tricky as it sounds; learn to be interesting without spilling others’ secrets, or your own. The best people, those worth knowing on every level, never respect anyone who uses malicious gossip or shares too much "to hold the floor.” Learn the difference between a good story and loose talk. No one needs to hear about your horrid ex-husband or college sexploits. The same thing goes for bragging. It’s tacky at any age. The only people who are impressed with boasts or name dropping are not worth much. Others will judge your worth based on your accomplishments and your ability to be gracious, charming, and interesting.
 
Be socially dazzling
Being socially dazzling means having a good command of current events, a sense of humour, and being a good listener. It doesn’t hurt to have good story with a killer punch-line either. Never tell off-colour, racial, or religious jokes.
 
Don’t interrupt or correct
I am stickler for the truth, but a bore ruins a good anecdote with petty corrections. When someone is having their moment in the spotlight, it doesn’t matter if they get a detail or two wrong. Let it go. Correcting them ruins their rhythm, and it is the height of bad manners. Also darlings, you might be wrong yourself. I cannot tell you the number of erroneous “corrections” I have heard in my life. I assure you, if someone is telling a good story about a celebrity or historical figure, no one cares if they get his eye colour or dog’s name wrong. Hush up and enjoy the story.
 
Also, if your have your own fabulous celebrity story, wait your turn. Do not chime in; it’s rude. The crowd and attention will still be there for you, so settle down.

Remember it’s a party, so keep it light and breezy
You can have a quick wit. It is good thing. People like to laugh, but try not to "cuisinart" other guests. No one likes a bitch. Don’t start nasty political or religious arguments. These days politics is incendiary! Learn to back away from overly-heated debates in a social setting with a gracious “let’s agree to disagree.” Be charming, never say “whatever,” or be abrupt or dismissive to anyone. I particularly dislike it when women try to dictate conversation by saying “enough about that now.” It’s so rude.
 
If you are having a personal drama, leave it at home. Send regrets if you are so consumed you can think and talk of nothing else. No hostess invests her times and money on a party for you commandeer her table with your issues.
 
Life is better with good manners. ‘Please’ and ‘thank you’ cushion any request, as does a smile. Etiquette makes life easier. It is a roadmap of accepted behaviour. Good manners make life so sweet.
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