9 Etiquette Mistakes To Avoid
Being considered elegant doesn’t just relate to your sense of style. Here are 9 etiquette mistakes that I have been making for a very long time, but I realised how bad these habits are. In this article, I am covering body language, good manners, posture and appearance, as well as how to avoid awkward social interactions. If you want to be a lady, you can certainly learn a lot from these 9 common etiquette errors.
Gossiping, whether it’s at work, with your friends or among close family is just mean and can quickly derail people’s opinions of you. It can be all too easy to share a sly remark or giggle at someone’s misfortune, but this is certainly not what a respected member society would do. It’s best to avoid gossiping as much as possible to uphold an elegant and emotionally intelligent persona. Elegance shines from the inside out so avoid this social etiquette faux pas. When people start gossiping around you, don’t join in with them, even if it’s really tempting and you feel like you can make more friends. I think people like this are not those friends you want to have around you. Have good friends who wish you well and who are not gossiping about others.
2: Phone on The Table
Dining out should remain a social occasion, and one of the fastest-growing social etiquette mistakes is using a mobile phone at the dinner table. Resist the urge to fill awkward silences with a quick scroll through social media and instead sip your drink, pay someone a compliment or start a new and interesting conversation. Glancing down at your phone is a clear body language signal that you’re just not interested in the other person or developing a deeper connection with them. Even if you’re on a date which isn’t going well, it is more elegant to be patient and kind, than pick up your phone.
3: Being Defensive
Being defensive can be perceived as aggression. If you’re at a social gathering, or perhaps at work and someone throws an accusation your way, the worst etiquette mistake you can make is to become defensive. In fact, this can be shown through your body language as well as your verbal response, so pay close attention to how you react physically. Instead, you should remain calm, consider their opinion or thoughts and address it graciously. Phrases such as ‘I understand how you feel, however…’ and ‘I’m sorry you feel that way but..” will all help you during these difficult confrontations.
4: Coughing or Sneezing
This huge etiquette mistake is not only bad manners, but it’s also bad hygiene. Coughing or sneezing without covering your mouth with either your hand, inner arm, or tissue is pretty disgusting and can spread an infection to others. Always try to carry tissues with you to remain elegant in any situation, and should you feel the urge to sneeze, use a tissue. If you need to cough, again take a tissue to cover your mouth and then dispose of it immediately. If you’re with people, you can also turn away and apologise, especially if it happens during a conversion. Also, you can excuse yourself for a while and use restrooms and then come back. But always keep tissues with you and cover your face or turn your back.
This fundamental body language mistake can give people the impression that you’re shy, anxious or lazy. An elegant woman should hold her head high and walk with a straight back. Standing or sitting tall with your shoulders down and your head high oozes self-confidence and will help you to appear slimmer too. If you find that you slouch regularly, you can invest in an anti-slouch back support, to bring down your shoulders and relax the muscles around your upper back and neck. This can be worn under your clothes discreetly until you eventually break this bad habit.
6: Eating While Talking or On The Go
Grabbing a bite to eat is not the best way to dine, but if you really are pressed for time, this can be done without breaking your elegant appearance. Rather than buy a snack to eat while on the move, choose a small salad, pasta dish or sandwich that you can eat within a couple of minutes but while sitting down at a table or on a bench. Never attempt to hold a conversation while chewing and, if time is of the essence, refrain from the conversation and focus on the task at hand. Take small but frequent bites and sip a drink to help you digest. Have a paper napkin to hand to clean your hands and mouth after and clean up after yourself before leaving. That’s just good manners!
7: Always Dress To Impress
Your wardrobe can reveal a lot about your personality, so make sure to invest in your unique sense of style. If you want to look sophisticated and elegant, choose structured pieces that flatter your figure and refrain from blindly following trends and what’s in fashion. Elegance is timeless and classic, but you can certainly accessorise to keep up with the latest designs, colours and trends.
8. Use Make-Up To Enhance Not Camouflage
A major etiquette mistake is to use cosmetics too heavily to conceal your natural features and flaws. It is far better to use a minimum amount of make-up to lightly conceal blemishes and redness and draw attention to your natural beauty, than layer heavy foundation over your beautiful skin.
9: Privacy Is Key
Another social etiquette mistake is over-sharing private information. From your close relationships to your financial situation, some details should be kept private. When you think of a member of the royal family or even a respected member of society, could you imagine if they were to reveal details about family disputes, their financial status or tell everyone what frustrates them the most about their partners? Privacy is power, for what people don’t know, they can’t use against you!