Magic words

Happy Etiquette Monday everyone! I hope you had a wonderful week and practised the art of shaking hands and perfected your firm handshake.

In manners, decorum or etiquette, have you heard of people mentioning, “the magic words”? No, i don’t mean the words sophisticated magicians chant. These magical words are used by ordinary, bourgeois, and royal persons. This week we’ll learn and practice the magic phrases and words. For now we’ll learn and practice 5 phrases: Thank you, Please,  Excuse me, I’m sorry and You’re welcome!

magic words

They may seem simple to you but how often do you use them in everyday conversation or social settings? These words are known to improve the situation in a hostile environment (between two people arguing), put a smile on a face, convey simple gratitude, and make you look sophisticated.

Thank you
Thank you – polite expression for acknowledging gratitude. When someone goes out of their way to do something for you, what is your response? When the waiter serves you your meal, what is your response? When your friend offers to give you a ride home or to the mall, what do you say? When your mother prepares a meal for you, what is your response? I hope the response is, Thank you. When you tell that person the two simple words thank you, they mean more to them than a pat on the back. Most of the time, the person will smile back at you to acknowledge the politeness. 

Excuse me
Excuse me – said politely while trying to get someone’s attention, asking someone to move so that you can pass, apologising for interrupting, and other various contexts. Some or most of the times during conversations, we interrupt by talking over the other person. Some of the time depending whether we are loud and audible enough, the person might keep quiet, feel offended but let us talk. However, the best way to go about this is, “excuse me, may I say something?” Chances are they will keep quiet and let you talk. “Excuse me” is a powerful magic word. 


Please – polite addition to requests. Personally, I don’t think there are situations that you can not use the word, “please”. However, people underuse the word. “Please”, should not only be used to people from on a higher social level than you. You should use it when addressing everyone: your parents, friends, classmates, neighbors, colleagues, and strangers. Please, let the word be part of your vocabulary. 


I’m sorry – polite apology. I’m sorry, is another phrase that is rarely practiced. When was the last time you apologized for doing something you weren’t meant to do? There are times that we think we are on the right but in reality we are in the wrong. During these moments when you don’t know what to do, just say “I’m sorry”. The person you are apologizing will see that you are taking responsibility for your action. No matter how difficult it might be to say the phrase, be the bigger person and say it. Practice it. 

You are welcome

You’re welcome – usually said as a response to “thank you”. Next time when someone says “thank you” rather than nodding your head, say “you’re welcome”. 

Practice these five magic words and see how people around you react. If this comes to you naturally, teach others on how to use the words. It makes a big difference.
#etiquettemonday #ladiesandgentlemen #thankyou #excuseme #please #imsorry #yourewelcome


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