Etiquette is essential in all aspects of everyone’s life. Regardless of who you are, what you do, what religion you follow or how old you are. It is about kindness, friendliness and politeness. But not only that! It is also about integrity and good manners. It teaches us how to treat others and how to behave ourselves in different settings. Many people think that following etiquette means that you are a prim and proper lady. Some people think that you have to have grown up in a fancy house, to know the etiquette. Or that you have to be of a ‘higher’ social class. That is not the case, everyone can learn manners and etiquette.
You can learn etiquette and manners, it is not necessarily born. Now with the internet, anyone can learn to be a well-mannered person. Most people are already pretty well-mannered without etiquette lessons. Our social settings teach us a lot. There is also a difference between being well-mannered and knowing etiquette. A person can still be impolite, even if they know everything about etiquette. I will share with you what the difference is between manners and etiquette. So if you ever asked yourself: “why do manners and etiquette matter?” or “what is the difference between manners and etiquette” I have the answers for you!
What is the difference between etiquette and manners?
What is etiquette?
It is as important today as it was for older generations. It is very different, however. In this age of technological internationalisation, our interactions have become more fast-paced than ever. We speak to people, that we would not have spoken to 50 years ago. This means that these rules need to transcend to other cultures, meaning that they should be universal. Sadly the fact is, that most Etiquette rules vary and depend on the country’s culture and customs. This means that it has to be adapted according to the geographical location you reside in. Manners, however, are quite similar in most countries. Interrupting someone in America is as rude as interrupting someone in Japan for example.
What are manners and what are manners for?
Manners are a way of doing something. The way in which you behave is described as your manner. Maybe you have seen the movie Kingsman, in which Colin Firth, who plays a gentleman spy, states:
Manners maketh man
A person who has good manners behaves like a good person. If this sounds very general, it is. While etiquette actually focuses on rules, manners involve more general behavioural guidelines. For example, not interrupting when someone is speaking and saying please and thank you. It goes deeper than that, however, it is the way you think, behave, speak, present and respect yourself! Manners are a mindset that translates to being a good human being. That means that you can have good manners, but not know all etiquette rules. Not knowing where to place your napkin doesn’t make you bad-mannered, it only shows that you are not familiar with the rules etiquette focuses on. The same is true for the opposite scenario. Even if you know all etiquette rules, you can still behave badly meaning that your manners are lacking.
So to summarize, Etiquette is a set of rules, Manners are the actions of respectable human behaviour. Following the proper etiquette and backing it up with good manners makes you a well-rounded person in social settings and often very well-liked
Why do you need manners and etiquette?
Every single person in this world wants to receive respect, kindness and consideration. It is in our nature to want to be wanted, considered, respected and loved. Etiquette is supposed to help us with this. It was a way to make everyone as comfortable as possible by introducing rules and principles that inform our conduct and behaviour at all times. The same goes for manners!
Why do you need etiquette?
You need etiquette because it breeds kindness and consideration for other people, whilst giving you the confidence to deal with all sorts of situations (social, business, family, everything) by giving you the tools to be as respectable as you can be. If you focus on actually following etiquette, you’ll see those good manners will be a result. It promotes respect and helps you when you want to make a good impression. Imagine you move to another country. I sure way to fit in quickly is to read up on their etiquette rules! How do they eat there? How do their social interactions progress? Knowing about their rules will make fitting in so much easier and the people there will think you have amazing manners!
Why do you need manners?
Manners are a way of thinking that will naturally lead to good behaviour, for example being grateful. If you are well-mannered, you’ll say thank you when you receive something and you’ll treat other people kindly, as you yourself would want to be treated. But that’s not all, being a well-mannered person will help you in life! Your career, relationships and social life are automatically better when you have manners. It is very important for kids to learn manners from a young age. Not knowing all etiquette rules won’t be a problem, those can always be learned. But manners translate to being a good person and should therefore be developed from a young age to ensure growth as a person.
So, why do I need manners and etiquette?
To make you a better, kinder, more thoughtful person. That is the short, sweet answer. But also, to alleviate your social station, rise up in your ranks at work, find a partner who will treat you well (because a well-mannered person won’t settle for someone who is rude!) and all in all, to have a better, more fulfilling life. Not only for yourself but also for those around you!
Would you like some more tips? I found this website, with a few starting tips!
Islamic Etiquette & Manners (Adab)
Now for all my Muslim sisters: Adab in the context of behaviour, is seen as Islamic etiquette. It basically means being refined, having good manners, and having morals, decorum and decency. As always, when it comes to Arabic and the translations of certain words, Adab has a different interpretation among different cultures. But most cultures agree that it is about personal standing, reputation and codes of behaviour that must be followed to be well-mannered in an Islamic sense.
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), narrated by Abu Hurairah (RA) stated that:
The perfect believer in respect of faith is he who is best of them in manners.
Islamic etiquette and manners are involved in every aspect of life. I bet you follow a few rules already! For example, if you have people over, do you excuse yourself to say that you’re going to powder your nose (or just say that you are going to the ladies room?) Many women don’t! I was thought from a young age to cover acts such as entering or exiting the ladies room. My mom always told me: “just say nothing, or that you are going to check up on the food!” Of course, I then had to actually check the food because otherwise, I would be lying. There are many more rules when it comes to Islamic etiquette and manners. Have a look in the Elegance or Modesty categories to find more about Islamic etiquette and manners.
Become that Classy, High-Value Sister!
Do you agree with the points I made? Let me know! If you want to learn more about elegance, etiquette and manners then take a look around this website. I write about Elegance, Self Love, Modesty, and more! Do you want to help the other Muslim sisters in your life too? Share my blog with them and follow me on Social Media!
Your Classy Muslim Sister