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Five Conversations A Lady Should Not Start

 It was Benjamin Franklin who said, “Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more important, is to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.”
This forms the very crux of my post today. Often enough, out of excitement, the need to make conversation or the reasoning that silence is a grave and awkward situation, people tend to say the wrong things at the wrong times. At other times though, people are truly just unaware of the fact that as far as etiquette, courtesy and tact go, some conversations should not be entertained. Here are five conversations a lady should not start and is not obliged to participate in.
1. Asking a dating couple if or when they’ll get married: it is awkward and intrusive to ask a couple when they will be ‘tying the knot.’ It is not in your place to probe answers out of them, even if jokingly. The details of this are best revealed by the couple themselves as it is a personal and private matter until otherwise made public. In some cases, there might be a complicated situation around their relationship, so bringing the question up does not help at all. If you are not told, take no offence in the fact that you will hear about their wedding (or otherwise) from them at a later time, when you get an invite or not or on social media like most people do these days

2. Asking a married couple when they’ll have a baby: if the above is intrusive, this takes intrusive several notches higher. The underlying unspoken questions come to mind and considering that this blog is about etiquette, I will not venture into stating what these unspoken questions are. Again, this is a private matter between the couple and the couple alone. It is against social etiquette to ask about this

I know that in some cultures or circles, generally speaking, people ask these questions all the time, maybe especially with people they know or are close to. It has somehow become normal. This however does not make it right. If this line of conversation is going to ensue, let it come from the party it concerns. It is worse still when you have just met these people. The recipients of such questions/questioning are not obliged to indulge the person asking if they do not want to.

3. Complimenting a single person in a group: did you know that it is not proper to compliment just one person when that person is in the midst of a group of people? If you have nothing to compliment the other people about, it is best to wait till you can be alone with the person you do want to compliment. It is inconsiderate and insensitive to compliment or notice just one person when there are other people present

4. Making controversial topics conversation starters: again, in a situation where someone feels the need to break the ice, etiquette would rather you go for the monotonous and predictable analysis of the weather. To discuss politics, religious preferences, human rights, past relationships, etc., is to create a probable and unnecessary uproar. Beyond conversation starters, controversial topics should be left alone based on the location, event, previous line of conversation, etc. For example, there should definitely be no banter at a formal dining occasion

5. Making ‘heartbreak’ known: I think this is self-explanatory. Ladies, please get it together. I know it can be difficult, but a conversation about technology should not become a conversation about the last job your ‘Ex’ had with a tech company. An analysis of a book among friends should not be turned into a conversation about how your ‘Ex’ influenced you into being an ardent reader. Everything should not end up in tears, too much information and emotional exposure.

Have a great weekend, but be careful what conversations you start and participate in as you have fun!

Categories: How to be a Lady, Importance of Etiquette | 3 Comments

Are You a Lady or are You Just Female? Pt 2

Hello everyone!

I got a lot of good and interesting feedback from my last post. I’ve spoken to ladies who could identify with some of the points I raised, where they were falling short and their plans to ‘get their lady on.’ Awesome!!!

Thanks for reading and sharing guys. I’ve enjoyed talking about this. I’m very eager to discuss with you again as I share the next part of this series. Let’s continue with five more (outward) attributes of a lady.

 

1. A lady does not wear clothes so revealing that they embarrass others. Have you ever seen some females, who in the name of fashion and looking sexy wear clothes so short, tight and revealing that they themselves are so uncomfortable that you begin to feel sorry for them? I have. A lady knows that private parts are supposed to be kept that way- private! She understands that her body is part of her pride and dignity. She knows how to package herself to look good, feel good and get attention, without revealing so much skin.

I believe it was Audrey Hepburn who said, ‘Wear clothes that are tight enough for people to know you’re a woman, but loose enough to show that you’re a lady.’ I love that quote so much

 

2. I have these pair of shoes that are what my mother calls ‘knock about shoes.’ They are comfortable and go with almost anything I wear, so I just slip my feet in and walk out of my house…without a good polish. They are black and leather so they don’t look ‘that dirty,’ but they are not clean. A lady is always clean. A rush, comfort, or the thought or fact that people won’t notice is never enough reason for a lady to go out dirty. It is not okay to wear that top that has a blot or oil stain. It is not okay to wear a shirt that ‘was white.’ It is not okay to have dirt under your fingernails. It is not okay to keep your hairdo on for weeks without treating it. A lady is always clean

Closely related to this, a lady will ensure her heels, soles and taps are replaced when they begin to wear out. Don’t wear shoes with peels here and there. Same goes for your bag. (I have to fix that bag!)

 

3. A lady does not put on her makeup in public. A lady comes out of her house looking beautiful. No one needs to know how it happened *wink*. It is not lady like to put on your makeup on the bus, on the train, at the dining table or anywhere that is not secluded, giving you the privacy you need

 

4. A lady never eats on the road or while on the move. No matter how hungry she is or how leisurely the walk is, a lady will not be caught in her tracks eating and worse still, talking while at it. If she is not eating at the restaurant or the fast food house where she bought the meal or snack, she’ll just have to wait till she gets home or somewhere secluded enough

 

5. A lady knows when to carry a purse, a handbag, a briefcase or a hand luggage. It is not every handbag or purse that is nice and pretty that goes with every outfit, colour or occasion. A lady must be selective about this and match appropriately. That gigantic bag is not going to work for that cocktail dinner.

 

Next week, I’ll share five conversations or discussions a lady should not have.

 

Have a lovely weekend and be a lady!

Categories: How to be a Lady, Importance of Etiquette | 7 Comments

Are You a Lady or Are You Just Female?

In my opinion, there are very few complements a female can get better than being told she’s a lady. As a matter of fact, I do believe that is probably the best complement she can get. This means that she is pristine, well put together in physical appearance and decorum, well mannered, well and soft spoken, poised and with good deportment. It is no longer news that one may be born female, but that does not necessarily and immediately translate into being a lady.
A lady attracts positive vibes and effects from people, both male and female. A lady makes heads turn, attracts help, politeness, kindness and praise from people.
Being a lady can be learned, just in case you already feel you don’t qualify. Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be sharing a list of things I’ve discovered to contribute immensely to being a lady. Let’s start with the things on the outside.

 

1. A lady knows that the pitch and volume of her voice is determined by where she is. If she is always using her outdoor voice, shouting no matter if she’s on the phone, in her bedroom or having a conversation across the dining table, she is not likely to be perceived as a lady. Even when she is excited or even angry, a true lady knows how to keep her voice within range. A lady modulates her voice to suit the circumstance

2. As much as I personally fall into this now and then as my nails grow, there really shouldn’t be any excuse for a lady to walk around with chipped nail polish. If she can’t maintain the culture of a good manicure and nail polish, she should not get into a make-shift routine. It is deemed tacky to have chipped nail polish

3. Sometimes, a lady gets uncomfortable in her clothes, because the clothes for one reason or the other have somewhat ‘developed a mind of their own’ and misaligned themselves with her body. A lady will not be caught adjusting her clothing in public, especially her bra and panties. She knows she shouldn’t even try to be quick, because people will see and sometimes, a one off adjustment doesn’t work, she’ll have to really get in there.*Covers face*
4. If I were to put this list in a specific order, this point would definitely compete for a spot in the top three. A lady guards the words of her mouth and the type of language and words she uses. She does not gossip or begin a rumour. A lady does not use foul language, curse or insult. Her vocabulary is vast enough to express herself without resorting to foul language

5. If the point before competes for the top three, this competes for the top one- Manners! Manners!! Manners!!! The outward hallmark of a true lady is her manners. A lady never leaves her manners in the back seat; she takes them with her everywhere, every time. Please, thank you, excuse me, pardon, are but a few words that make up her sentences. She does not interrupt or dominate conversations, she does not cut in lines, she does not assume liberty with other people’s possessions especially in their space, she respects elders, she does not create a scene, she is soft spoken,…she is a true lady.

Do you see a lady in you or are you about to make some changes?

Come by again next week for more. See ya!

Categories: How to be a Lady, Importance of Etiquette, Manners | 16 Comments

Battle of Words Pt.2

Hi everyone!

I do hope your weekend’s going great. I’m relaxing today and I absolutely love it!

Here are a few more misused words and phrases (read my last post for the first part of this series). You’ll know a few, be surprised by some and definitely learn something new. You’re welcome. *wink*. Kindly share the knowledge with people you know. Please also add other misused words and phrases in the comment box so we could all learn. Thanks.

 

1. First come, first serve  Vs  First come, First served: in as much as we say this ever so often, it is still not correct. First come, first serve indicates that the first person to arrive at a certain place would be the first to serve others who come after. The correct thing to say is ‘First come, first served. This means that the first person to arrive will be served or attended to first

2. Prostate Cancer  Vs  Prostrate Cancer: I’m not too sure how we got around to using the word ‘prostrate’ in this context. Why is the cancer lying face down? ‘ProstRate’ means to lie face down while prostate (without a second ‘r’) is a gland found in front of a male’s bladder. I guess they sound alike, hence the confusion

3. Regardless  Vs  Irregardless: Irregardless is not a word. The suffix ‘less’ already connotes that a negative has been added to the word thereby defining its meaning. Regardless means ‘without regard’ for something or someone. Adding the prefix ‘ir’ to the word is unnecessary/redundant and makes it a double negative

4. Amused  Vs  Bemused: some people wrongly believe that these two words mean the same thing and so use them interchangeably. However, amused and bemused are two different words. Yup, not the same at all. Amused means to be entertained or made to laugh. For example: ‘I was very amused by her performance last night.’ Bemused on the other hand means to be confused or puzzled. For example: ‘I was bemused by her sudden decision to call off the engagement.’

5. Ask  Vs  Aks: it would be an extremely horrid sight if every time we ‘aKsed’ someone a question, they were actually ‘axed.’ The right way to pronounce this word is with the ‘s’ coming before the ‘k’ as in ‘aSk.’ To ‘aKs’ would mean to butcher someone and we don’t want that

6. Whet your appetite  Vs  Wet your appetite: this phrase is usually more spoken than written, which is one reason I’m sure a number of people don’t know that we actually ‘wHet’ our appetite. To ‘wet’ our appetite would be to saturate our desire for food (especially/in this context) with water or some other liquid. To ‘wHet’ or appetite means to stimulate or desire for food and this is the correct use of the phrase

7. Principal  Vs  Principle: these two words are pronounced the same way even though their meanings are different. Simply put, without the oral/phonetic symbols, they are both pronounced as ‘princiPUL’ (not pronounced as Paul’ but as ‘pull’)

8. Lose  Vs  Loose: again, these are two different words which people mix up a lot, especially in writing. To ‘lose’ means to be unable to find something or to be deprived of or cease to have something. For example, to lose your keys or lose your appetite. Loose on the other hand means something is not tightly or closely fitted. For example, to have loose clothes, i.e. baggy or slack clothes.

 

Get it right. Be free from grammatical errors. Have a great weekend!

 

Categories: Grammar, Importance of Etiquette | Leave a comment