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Please and Thank You

It’s good to be gracious. How do you practice graciousness?

At work, it can be tempting to bark orders rather than ask nicely. When you want to motivate someone to do something, one technique you could use is to yell, demean, or belittle the person. But how effective is this, really? What if you asked your direct report to complete a task instead of commanding him/her to do it? He/She might actually perform better and maintain a more positive relationship with you.

For some people the simple practices of etiquette are, well, simple. For others, it can be difficult under pressure, deadlines, stress, and exhaustion to remember to be kind to the people in their lives. At work sometimes people are on their best behavior because they know that incivility can cause a direct problem with their ability to get work done with their colleagues.

At home, do you practice the same graciousness you extend to the general public? I’ve heard people say that they don’t have to be nice to their family because family members aren’t going anywhere. The thing is, sometimes family members do leave, maybe not physically but in the form of strained relationships or unresolved tension.

The next time you feel yourself taking out your internal stress on the people around you, remember to take a breath, stay calm, and say please and thank you. It’s just nice to be nice.

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