There are a lot of simple unspoken rules that we follow as people on Earth. These are things that keep society running like a well-oiled machine (although some would disagree). Follow these simple rules in order to be a better member of society and who knows, maybe it’ll earn you something in return!
1. Stop Looking at Your Phone
I’m not saying to stop looking at your phone in the sense that your mother tells you to. What I mean is that when someone is talking to you or confiding in you, just put the phone down. Although you may be listening, it seems less genuine and like you really don’t care what the person has to say. It’s like that quote from author Chuck Palahniuk, “People don’t listen, they just wait for their turn to talk.” Don’t be the embodiment of that thought.
2. Use Your Blinker
Look, driving is a piece of cake and you know how to maneuver your own car. That’s great but show some common courtesy to the other drivers around you. Believe it or not, the other people on the road have places to be also. The only exceptions in my book would be if there is no one behind you in your lane or the lanes next to you.
The importance of this is just to let people know what you’re about to do. What if there’s another driver like you who don’t use their blinker when switching lanes and you guys both move over at the same time because neither of you let the other know. That’s an accident waiting to happen. Also, if you’re about to turn into a parking lot from the main street, use your blinker to signal your turn. Not only will the car behind you know to slow down, the cars exiting that same parking lot will know that it’s okay to turn out since you’re turning before you reach them. It’s not hard people!
3. Say Please and Thank You
This is something that should’ve been taught at a very young age. Simple manners can go a long way. Anytime you’re asking for anything or receiving something, just say please and thank you. You’ll look like a well-rounded person and earn yourself more respect. Even if it’s just at the McDonald’s drive-thru, tell the cashier “please” after ordering and “thank you” before driving away. Their jobs aren’t great so it’s nice to see some gratitude every now and then.
4. Acknowledge Someone When They Greet You
We all know how annoying it can be when you go into a clothing store and the employees bombard you with shop specials and greetings. That doesn’t mean that it’s okay to be rude. Just say “hello” or “thank you/no thanks” and move on. Completely ignoring them is incredibly rude and can make a person feel like trash because they’re only doing what they’re told to do.
5. Throw Your Trash in a Trash Can
I can’t tell you how frustrating it is to see someone littering for no reason. I used to work at a theme park that had a trash can placed every ten feet so that people didn’t have a need to litter. Did that stop them? No. People would throw their garbage on the floor all the time even though there was a trash can five steps away.
Even when you’re in your car and end up with trash like a candy wrapper or bag, just wait until you get to a trash can to throw it away. I’ve seen people toss stuff out of their car windows one too many times. It’s ignorant and completely unnecessary. Look, you don’t get to complain that your town sucks and is ugly if you’re contributing to both of those. Be the difference.
6. Have Integrity
The simplest way I can make this is that you should always do the right thing, even when no one is watching. You’ll feel good about yourself and people notice this stuff! Having integrity at the workplace can also go a long way. A manager knows that most employees are there just to make a paycheck. If you show that your job is more than just money, they will notice that and reward you accordingly. This has worked for me at every single job I’ve ever held. Even when you think no one is watching, they will notice.
7. Show Low-Wage Workers Respect
Just because a person is flipping burgers for a living or working at your local department store does not mean that they are any less human than you or me. They are just trying to make ends meet like the rest of us. Most of them are going to school or working multiple jobs to support themselves or their families. Don’t be a difficult customer or person who belittles someone based on their job title. It says more about you than it does about them.
8. Never Expect That You Deserve More Than Anyone Else
Just like showing respect to low-wage workers, you shouldn’t expect to have special treatment for any reason at all. Even if you are an important member of society or you have been going to a certain store for ten years. You are still a person the same as everyone else. Yes, it’s nice when your loyalty or status can earn you perks, but it’s not up to you to say where and when you get those perks. If the line at Wal-Mart is taking a long time then sorry, you have to wait like everyone else. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been shopping there for thirty years. You’re a customer just like everyone else. Perhaps if you accept this, then the universe will start rewarding you accordingly and rain nice things upon you. If not, then accept it.
Aaron is an aficionado of pizza, beer and anything nerd related. He has very strong opinions on the Marvel Cinematic Universe and is becoming increasingly frustrated with the DC Universe.