Etiquette for the Business of Life

I always thought other people knew the secret code for feeling at ease in social situations. My all-around discomfort during dinners and events convinced me that I was the only one who wanted to hide in a cave and avoid further interactions with humans.

Have you ever felt that way? Most of us have from time to time.

I decided to combat my social unease with an education in etiquette. During my classes at The American School of Protocol®, the most profound lesson reinforced is that you glide through challenging social situations when you simply reach out and show courtesy and respect to others.

Sure, there are set rules on how to interact, share a meal and correspond. However, these etiquette guidelines exist not for themselves, but to facilitate your sociability and bring joy to your interaction with others, allowing you to display your natural, best self.

What a gift!

After my education in protocol, I felt equipped with so much helpful, life-changing information that I wanted to share the knowledge with others. Having had a long teaching career, forming an etiquette education company offered a natural way to share what I know with as many people as possible.

During this time of resolutions and goal-setting, I encourage you to include acts of courtesy on your list. You might consider:

• Saying hello to people you pass on the street
• Replying to emails within 24 hours
• Having a sit-down meal with your family at least twice a week
• Connecting with five people at every social function you attend

True, these are simple actions, but imagine the positive results you’ll experience by actually employing them. Feels good, doesn’t it?

Join me in making 2014 a courteous year in Orange! Let’s work together to cultivate character and civility.

Find out more on our website:

ETIQUETTE For the Business of Life offers hands-on, practical knowledge of etiquette protocols and self-presentation. We create classes for children through adults and customize trainings for businesses, offices and organizations.

Published in the Jan/Feb 2014 edition of the Old Towne Orange Plaza Review

Written by Candace Smith, Photograph by Aaron Jacoby

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