Civility and Responsibility

One of the attributes of The Discipline Without Stress methodology is the promotion of the basic characteristic of any character education approach: Taking responsibility for one’s behavior. Without “responsibility” no other trait of civility would be possible.

George Washington and many of the other founding fathers of the USA first focused on how one could IMPROVE ONESELF as the first criterion to influence others. “The Rules of Civility,” the etiquette planner that Washington copied as a teenager, begins with the following admonition: “Every action done in company ought to be done with some sign of respect to those that are present.”

Perhaps the concept of “appropriate” or “unwritten rules” should be revisited with young people. Examples abound: wearing pajamas in private vs. in public, using certain language in private vs. public, and doing what comes naturally in private or in public.

Civility itself is founded on the concept of taking individual responsibility for appropriateness and respect for others.

What are you doing in your relationships or your interactions with others to promote responsibility and civility?