The art of relationships


Sometimes I have found it is just hard to live in this world with other people. Many are so considerate, but others worry only about their own well-being. In order to make our lives more harmonious, I came across this list of ways to treat other people. Some reminded me of my own experiences. I think some of them might fit into your life, too.
The first tip: Don’t make a scene. I believe this refers to a commotion in public about anything. My favorite story about my friend who did not want to make a scene goes like this. We were having lunch in a local restaurant and she ordered her sandwich without onion or banana peppers that were included on the menu. She doesn’t like them. Her lunch arrived with not only the onion but also the banana peppers. She said to the server right away, “Oh you didn’t do what I asked. I can take them off, but my sandwich is still going to taste like them.”
Immediately, as all good ones do, the server offered to take it back and remake it. But my friend had the ultimate comeback. She replied that she would remove the unwanted items and just eat it the way it was because she wanted to eat with her friends.
The point here is when an item goes back improperly cooked in some way, it almost never reappears until everyone else is done eating. Until it comes, the person whose order was incorrectly prepared just has to sit there while everyone else is eating. Their food usually arrives late and often they just take it home. This is why I never send anything back.
The rest of the story is that there was no charge for her meal, so the restaurant handled the situation properly.
How about this tip: When opening presents, no one likes a good guesser. I have seen people try to guess what’s in the package and the person who is giving the gift is waiting in anticipation to see if it’s going to be something the recipient really likes. So don’t start guessing because it ruins the anticipation part. I think this is a good tip and I don’t think I’ve ever successfully guessed what was in a package anyway.
Then there’s this tip: Look people in the eye when you thank them. Here’s my feeling about this, I think you should look people in the eye whenever you talk to them. When I address someone else, I appreciate it if they look at me. Then you know your thoughts are being heard and hopefully understood. Plus, isn’t it just common courtesy?
Now we have this tip to consider: Be patient with airport security. They are just doing their job. Well, of course, I do have something to say about this. Many are doing their job, but maybe some are just being vindictive.
My story begins with a report I saw on television. It was actually a warning to protect your property when you are going through airport security. Keep your items in view because several people in a large airport had their carry-on luggage stolen while they were walking through the sensor machine.
All this was in my mind one day when the TSA agent told me to move my carry-on forward so that the belt could haul it into the sensor machine, where he was going to view the contents. My problem was that there were four people in front of me waiting to go through the metal detector. I politely told him I would do that as soon as I was ready to go through. Apparently he didn’t like my reply because when I get to the other side, he said my bag had to be searched. In all the times I’ve traveled, this might have happened twice and this was one. Another agent took every single thing out of my bag saying it looked like suspicious contents. Really!
Seriously, I knew exactly what was going on there. He didn’t like it that I didn’t do what he said but I was trying to be responsible with my possessions. I mentioned it to the person who was rifling through all my things, and bravely told her that I knew what was going on. I explained the situation to her and she just smiled. Hmmm. Okay, they have a tough job to do, but they aren’t perfect.
Oh by the way, they didn’t find anything bad in my bag and after about a 15-minute delay, I was able to go on.
I love this tip: Smile at strangers. A few years ago I unconsciously adopted this and it is amazing that 95% of the people will smile back at you or say something pleasant. Of course there’s always someone who’s having a bad day, and instead of smiling, they increase the snarl that was already on their face. I’m sorry I couldn’t help them that day, but getting a smile back from a stranger is quite a nice lift.
I must be quick to point out here that I don’t remember doing any smiling at that TSA agent who caused my delay in the airport. But life is hard some days. So, be good to those around you. I wish you a pleasant and smiling day!
(Melanie Behrens –


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