by Charles A. Monagan
Dec 1, 2011
08:30 AM
On Connecticut

Spreading Civility


Sara Hacala, Weston resident and author of Saving Civility: 52 Ways to Tame Rude, Crude and Attitude for a Polite Planet (SkyLight Paths), suggests we “give the gift of civility” this holiday season. Here are five tips to help you do just that:

• When gathering with loved ones, establish common ground rather than focus on divisions—revive a precious positive memory, praise an accomplishment of a sibling or recognize your sister-in-law’s contribution of plum pudding to the celebration, even if it tastes like spiced cardboard.

• Spending money on experiential things can have more lasting satisfaction than material gifts, so consider taking a friend out to lunch rather than buying her a new scarf.

• “Loose lips sink ships” and also can destroy relationships as well as careers. Avoid overindulging in alcohol, be it at a neighborhood party or office celebration.

• Extend goodwill by practicing random acts of kindness—smile at a stranger; give an encouraging word to someone who needs it; open a door for a shopper laden with packages.

• Give yourself a gift by enjoying the season. Set limits on what you can do; doing too much will only leave you fatigued and impatient with others.

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Spreading Civility

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