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Bill O’Reilly and James Patterson have a new best-selling children’s book out: “Give Please a Chance.”  

It’s not great.  But the idea and title are, of course, spectacular.  Especially for travelers.  

Politeness and respect are two qualities that will carry more and more people to success this coming year.  Everyone’s losing their mind over last month’s election.  No matter what side you’re on, respecting other people’s opinions is a new standout trait.

If you can do these two things: be polite and respectful, you’ll be an outlier and people will notice.

Jeff Haden, a contributing writer and editor for Inc. Magazine, offers these suggestions for being more polite…

  1. Step forward. Don’t wait for people to come to you.  Show a genuine interest in meeting them and walk toward them.
  2. Call people by the name they use to introduce themselves. Others may call them Jack or John, but if they introduce themselves as Johnny, call them Johnny until they tell you otherwise.
  3. Don’t touch first – I’m guilty of this!!  Huggers hug and patters pat but really polite people don’t initiate touch with people they don’t know.  Lots of people don’t like to be touched by strangers.  
  4. Don’t gossip.
  5. Ask good questions. Questions folks are interested in answering… and others genuinely want to hear the response.  “I see you’re into golf.  What made you start?”… “I heard you like to travel.  Where are you going next?”
  6. Never judge. Polite people recognize that they’re not perfect, either.
  7. Listen. The most polite people are masters at turning conversations back onto the other talker.  They find you fascinating which makes you feel fascinating which makes you leave thinking they’re fascinating (even though you now know very little about them because you talked the whole time).
  8. Practice. Polite people never stop being polite.  It’s something they practice every day.

So here’s your challenge: Try to be more polite today.  Ignore a political post you’re dying to comment on… hold a door for someone you don’t know… let someone in a noticeable hurry go in front of you… speak to someone with respect and listen with genuine interest in who they are.

Try it today and everyday from now on.

Give politeness a chance and I bet people – including editors and photo buyers – will notice.

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