Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Retro 1963 Etiquette Advice for Women

How to Sweeten Your Personality
Sugar sweetens the tempers of those around us and makes the most ordinary event or encounter seem very special. Spice is important too, because it keeps sugar from being too bland.

Each of us now and then needs to take stock of her special feminine attributes and make sure she is including enough "sugar and spice and all things nice." Sugar sweetens the tempers of those around us and makes the most ordinary event or encounter seem very special. Spice is important too, because it keeps sugar from being too bland. In my work "sweetening" and "flavoring" the personality receive careful attention.

Do you smooth your way with magic words?



Explore, if you already haven't, the sweet use of pet names. A pet name makes another person feel he or she has a special place in your life and thoughts. A pet name (and this goes for general ones such as "honey" and "darling") should be spoken only with sweetness and good feeling. When you are out of patience with the one you love and can't keep the snap out of your voice, address the person by name.

"Please," "Thank you," "I am sorry," "You have been most helpful," "Please forgive me" -- such magic words sweeten every encounter when spoken with warmth and sincerity. Failure to say such things at the right time results in ruffled tempers and strained relationships. Use these magic words consistently with your family, friends, and everyone you meet.

Intimacy should never be used as an excuse to be careless with little courtesies. And take note that "to turn a pretty phrase" is considered a priceless social asset. It is not, for example, incorrect to say, "You are welcome," when you are thanked, but there are more gracious expressions: "I was delighted to do it," or, "It was my pleasure," if you have done an errand for someone. Or, after being thanked for a present: "I am so glad you were pleased." If a stranger thanks you for something such as information, nod and smile.

Can you compliment others sincerely?
A pet name makes another person feel he or she has a special place in your life and thoughts.

Flattery is defined as "excessive and insincere praise." A compliment is based on the truth, but one may exaggerate to create a light touch. It is unkind and patronizing to give false praise; you would compliment a plain woman upon her charm, not upon her beauty. Your friends' warm personality, consideration, humor, aptitudes, and understanding are all worthy of recognition. You can say: "You are more fun than anyone I know." Or "You walk so gracefully." In complimenting, avoid "left-handed" remarks. Say "Oh, what a becoming hairstyle!" Not: "You've changed your hair." Or: "Your hair looks so much better since you've had it cut." A compliment ceases to be a compliment if it suggests any criticism.

From "Social Awareness ~Your guide to today's manners"
By Luella Cuming for Family Circle Publications, 1963