As usual this week families and friends will be gathered around the table at Thanksgiving to share good food and conversation. However, something else is liable to occur that is different from your traditional holiday gatherings and flies in the face of Thanksgiving etiquette. One or more of those present may be there in body only because they will have their head down and their thumbs in motion while they text. How rude is that? But sadly, how commonplace in today’s world. It defies all the rules of etiquette and protocol.
I witnessed this behavior personally last year while dining with friends. One of the family members was there in body only. He spent the entire meal staring at his phone. As others lingered in conversation, he finally removed himself and found a chair away from the table and continued to be entranced by his mobile device. It was hard to tell which was the real turkey at the table that day.
May I suggest that if you plan to join others for a meal on Thanksgiving Day that you be fully engaged and fully present. Brush up on your Thanksgiving etiquette. Unless your invitation reads, “John Smith and Phone,” leave your device somewhere out of sight. What can possibly be more important than interacting with your family and friends? So Aunt Marha’s stories maybe getting a little old and Uncle Bob may be nodding off, but they are not to be ignored.
If you are so attached to your smart phone that you can’t take your eyes off of it, stay home. It is insult to those who came to spend time with you and others to text at the table. If you go, take your best manners and Thanksgiving etiquette in lieu of your cellular device.
Honor your family and friends by listening to them and appreciating them if only for a few hours. You may not have the chance again.
Before closing may I remind you that I just published a new eBook for the holidays? If you have any doubt about the do’s and do nots’ of holiday etiquette, the book, Business Etiquette For The Holidays, is available on my website and in the Kindle Store on Amazon. It is a small investment which will keep you from committing a holiday faux pas.
Hire Lydia to work with your staff to improve customer service and employee relations through the use of those priceless and often over-looked soft skills called manners. Lydia is the “unstuffy” business etiquette expert who helps individuals and organizations add the polish that builds profits. We’re talking about your bottom line here.
Since 1996, countless people have benefited from her wisdom through keynotes, seminars and conference breakout sessions. Her Southern charm and sense of humor have made her a sought-after speaker and consultant.
Based in Savannah, Georgia, Lydia is available for national, regional and local speaking and training engagements. She has suitcase; will travel.