Social Graces: Conversation

An elegant woman does not chatter. She does not wear her heart on her sleeve for all to see. Revealing all of her personal life at work or at play is not in good taste. Chattering is boring and does not make you sought out. Of course one may share her fondest dreams and some personal matters with a close friend in private. This is the best discretion to use. The elegant woman rarely talks about herself. She participates in conversations with utmost care for her dignity as well as her reputation. She does not divulge her thoughts on the latest controversial subject nor does she involve herself in political discussions. Instead she prefers to listen intently and remain neutral. If she has a strong opinion or criticism she keeps it to herself in order to maintain her character. An elegant woman keeps a smile on her face that is genuine and kind. She makes a point of not staying in one place too long during a social gathering but rather, mingles around the room to greet and meet everyone so as not to offend or neglect anyone. As a hostess she sees to it that all in attendance feel welcome and as comfortable as is appropriate. She does not hurry her conversation or voice the triumphs of her children often. An elegant woman remains positive and polite. She steers away from negative conversations and never complains. She may express frustrations to close friends in private only as a means to find a solution. She sees and speaks of the good in everyone as much as possible.

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Social Graces: On Being Punctual

Being elegant means being “put together”. An elegant woman is always punctual, reliable, and makes an entrance gracefully. She would never arrive late, only to go on about how busy she is and how many important things she had to do. Elegance is not chaotic.

How does one be consistently punctual?

*Organization is key.

Always keep a schedule whether it is in a notebook or smart phone, keeping an accurate schedule is essential. Make it a habit to consistently check it the day before so as to be able to be prepared for the coming day.

* Gather any special materials you might need for the next days activities the day before or the week before depending on how labor intense the preparations may be.

*Always keep things in good repair.

Make certain that everything from your clothes to your car are in the best condition possible. This lessens the likelihood of something falling apart, your car not starting, or unacceptable clothing creating a crisis.

*Don’t¬†over commit.

It does impress anyone that you have to rush from one commitment to the next. Some people believe that this makes them worthy or sought out. Its just simply egotistical and annoying. Politely decline an invitation should your schedule already be full. Never cancel or not attend an event just because something better came along. Once you accept an invitation then you should attend.

*Leave plenty of time.

Having an elegant morning routine that allows you the surety of knowing the length of your preparation time is very helpful in attending important events as well as volunteer obligations and the workplace. Give yourself plenty of time to prepare for and travel to the event.

*Upon arrival collect yourself and quietly enter the event, even if it is just your regular workplace. Excuse yourself to the ladies room to efficiently check hair, makeup and clothing so as to make a lovely first impression to anyone. Then walk away from the mirror and forget about making too frequent trips to the ladies room. Overdoing the primping is not elegant. One wants to seem effortlessly put together.

*Mingle and make polite conversation as you pay attention to carrying yourself with poise, quiet confidence, and grace. Never stand in the corner and scowl. Being punctual will always put you in the spotlight. Others that know you will want to seek you out because you are reliable and pleasant to be around.

Elegant Eating

The elegant woman has a way of eating that is considered lady-like and delicate. The way of woman conducts herself in public or in private at the table or while mingling at the latest social event is one of the most visible first impressions one may experience. There are a few simple hints that will guide you to make a good impression without going hungry.

 

*An elegant woman may occasionally state that she is “famished” but she would never use the terms of “starving” or “I could eat a horse”, for example. She should eat small amounts at reasonable intervals throughout the day so as to take the best care of herself and never be subject to¬†Bingeing.

 

*Consider the offerings in regards to possible stains on your clothing. For instance, avoid eating spaghetti with red sauce especially if you are wearing white or a light color or take only a very small portion of a dish that is oily or laden with sauces. This is the most healthy thing to do as well.

 

*Never overload your plate. Take small portions and have plenty of space in your dish for food. There has been a tradition among women for ages to eat before they go out so as to avoid the human nature to overindulge. An elegant woman must remember to appreciate the first three bites in their entirety.

 

*Be aware of finger foods and crumbs. When gloves were all the rage among elegant ladies the rules about eating finger foods were strict. Now that they are out of style it is acceptable for a lady to partake of such but with awareness to eat delicately, taking small bites and using a napkin often for both hands and the corners of the mouth to ensure that you do not retain any unsightly crumbs or food on yourself.

 

*Eat slowly. Eating too quickly may cause gastric upset as well as appear as if you are living in a dormitory where there is not enough food for all. Take your time to chew each bite and savor the flavors.

 

*Never talk with your mouth full. When you chew your mouth should remain closed so as not to make unladylike noises. It also makes certain that food remains in your mouth and is not spewed elsewhere. Speaking with food in your mouth is quite simply rude and creates an awful site for present company.

 

*Never comment on food you don’t like. A simply and quietly stated, “I don’t care for any, thank you” will suffice. Going on about your dislikes is poor manners and insulting to your host or restaurant guests.

 

*One should never criticize the host or hostess. It is in poor taste to openly criticize or critique a social event that another has worked hard to organize. Always thank your host or hostess when you depart. If the event was truly ghastly, make a point not to return for the next event hosted by the same. Kindly state that your schedule does not permit it and move on.

 

*Engage in polite and appropriate dinner or social conversation. Politics, religion, violence, crime, or sex should never enter into dinner table conversations. Talk little of yourself, answering appropriate questions of others politely. Avoid launching into long stories about yourself or your loved ones. Veer the talk to others by asking them questions about themselves or current events. Smile politely and listen intently.

Keeping up Appearances

It is important to make an elegant first impression. Just as important is keeping up appearances. To do this in a healthy and positive way is what an elegant woman strives for ultimately. There are a number of ways to make this become rather effortless most of the time.

 

* Keep things simple.

 

Think quality instead of quantity. When buying something for yourself or for your home take the time to determine if you really need it and if it is of lasting quality. The less you have, the less you have to upkeep and worry about. If you are wealthy enough to have staff that takes care of things, you still have to direct them.

 

* Be conscious of your speech.

 

Never speak ill of anyone else. This saves you the awkward situations and hurt feelings of others as well as helping to keep your life positive and straight forward. You are less likely to become entangled in negative talk or situations if you stay clear in focus and kind in speech.

 

* Be impeccable with your word.

 

Be careful not to over-commit yourself. It is better to spend enough time to do things right on one thing than to do too many things and not be able to do them well. When you do commit to doing something be sure to follow through and be true to your word. Even the smallest things are important. Children are most important to keep your word to. They are impressionable at any age and will admire you if you keep your promises.

Make promises to anyone wisely. Although intentions are usually good, trust will not come if you aren’t impeccable with your word.

 

*Keep good company.

 

Be careful as to the company you keep. “Show me who you run with and I’ll show you who you are” applies here. Others will make assumptions about you based solely on who they see you with. No matter the social status of a person, be aware of the person that they are on the inside. If they are not honest and kind don’t bother spending time with them. Greet them politely and move on.

 

* Stay put together

With an Elegant morning routine and an awareness of yourself you will stay put together in appearance. Leave enough time in your schedule to be able to groom yourself properly and wear clothing that is simple but elegant, not in disrepair. Routinely taking care of the basics such as making sure you have gas in your car or are current with your bills and events ensures that you will be an elegant woman always.