When you exude grace and dignity it opens many doors for you because you exude a self-assuredness that draws people to you. If you feel like you lack this – it can be cultivated. I have girlfriends who keep me in check and here are a couple of ways:
DO NOT GOSSIP:
Not gossiping makes you a powerful role model. Not gossiping means your efforts are directed at more fun and productive subjects. Go about your business with poise without being drawn into gossip, defend people who are not present by pointing out that the person they are talking about is not present to defend themselves. Friends defend each other.
MAKE LIFE A FORMAL AFFAIR:
In an African traditional context we have formalities that we observed or still observe. For instance, family meals were a time of gathering and sharing. Sometimes the eldest would eat first and the rest would follow, it just depends on the family. Either way, meal times can be a great place to start with bringing in some formality into our lives. Formality being structure, predictability and good manners.
Meals can be scheduled to be eaten around the same time. This creates predictability for the family and avoids them snacking as they look forward to a beautiful meal. A meal served with your best dishes – yes – the ones we reserve for special guests. Lay the table beautifully and add flowers and cloth napkins. Meals can be the time to catch up with family without technology disrupting – no phones, no TV. Even if you leave alone it is a great time to catch your breath and savour your meals. You deserve it.
BE WELL READ
Be well read and read widely from the classics to current literature. Be au fait with current events as it makes you more interesting. Cut down on time spent in front of the TV and replace some of that time getting lost in a good book and in great conversations.
EXPLORE THE ARTS
Museums, theatres, art exhibitions, poetry sessions, comedy shows and live shows are great places to cultivate some culture. As a student I loved the Grahamstown Arts Festival – a great meeting point for art lovers from free shows to epic productions. Art speaks to both the heart and intellect.
DRESS WELL TO HONOUR YOURSELF
Find your style and make the effort to honour yourself by dressing well all the time. Even when you are just at home avoid the temptation to wear tatty clothes, honour those around you by dressing well.
With social media as part of our everyday lives it is so easy to over-share. Resist the temptation. Some aspects of your life should only be known to family and very close friends. Cultivating an air of mystery is intriguing.
BE A GREAT FRIEND AND SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE WHO INSPIRE YOU
I am blessed with great driven friends who keep me in check and who expect nothing but the best from me. Surround yourself with great people who help you cultivate grace.
All the best with opening new doors for yourself!
Photo credits: My friends