“A gentleman will not insult me, and no man not a gentleman can insult me”. – Frederick Douglass
Why wait? Being a gentleman includes understanding there is a need for constant and continuous improvement in the way you carry yourself and present yourself. Just like a gentleman would not be caught wearing something that is unflattering or extremely outdated.
We as gentlemen must always strive to improve how we treat others and represent the gentleman lifestyle.
We have an obligation to the world to be an example.
Most people have new year resolutions. A lot of these resolutions are vague and that is one reason that they are not being kept. Just saying my new year’s resolution is to lose weight or be nicer to people, or not to procrastinate or keep a clean car or house, sounds good but they are not specific enough and therefore easy to break. As gentlemen it is important for us to keep our word, not only to other but to ourselves also.
“I feel keeping a promise to yourself is a direct reflection of the love you have for yourself. I used to make promises to myself and find them easy to break. Today, I love myself enough to not only make a promise to myself, but I love myself enough to keep that promise”
― Steve Maraboli.
Many people go to the gym in January and February and then fall off because it is not a habit. If you have to procrastinate and wait to do something that is a benefit for yourself, are you really committed to it? This is a category we as gentlemen should not fall into. Make a promise, keep a promise.
With that being said let’s look at 20 “starting in December lasting all year” new year resolutions for the gentleman.
These resolutions that you can start now and they will become habits as the new year begins and progresses. My suggestion is to choose two or three at a time and work on them and by the end of 2017 you will be a better gentleman.
- Have a signature drink that you both can make at home after a long day’s work, and order with effortless swag at any bar you happen to be in. (This means no complicated ingredients and easy substitutes. If it’s a whiskey soda, so be it.) If you do not already have one, start tasting different drinks NOW, this is the fun part, so by the time the new year rolls around you will be an expert at your drink.
- Keep all negative social media activities to a minimum, because no gentleman engages in things like Twitter fights or passive-aggressive Facebook statuses. It’s just not classy. Remember things stay in cyberspace forever and you never know who will see what and when they will see it.
- Hold doors open for everyone, because that’s just a nice thing that you do. But especially no woman that is in your circle should have to touch a door when you are there. If you have sons, then teach them early and if you have daughters they should NEVER touch any doors and have the expectation that they should not have to open doors when they are with any man.
- Always text back promptly, even if it’s to let someone down gently. The worst thing you can possibly to do someone is leave them hanging so they can torture themselves with worst case scenarios. (This is one I am working on constantly)
- Master a good handshake, so that you are neither depositing your limp sea slug of a hand on someone else’s palm, nor crushing them with your “yes I go to the gym and bench press 500 pounds” handshake.
- Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize, accessorize!!!!!! Because a pair of nice shoes or a classy watch can upgrade you almost immediately. (Don’t forget the cuff links or pocket watches)
- Call your mother, often, even if you have to set up a Google calendar reminder to get yourself to do this.
- Know how to cook at least a few good meals, because 1. There is nothing worse than guys who assume it’s up to the woman to do all the cooking, 2. There is nothing sexier than a dude who can cook, and 3. Everyone deserves to feed themselves well. There is no excuse for a man not being able to cook. You do not want to be beholden to any woman for your basic sustenance. We have slow cookers, crock pots, air fryers, and baking food is healthier than frying food in a wad of grease and a lot cleaner and easier. You don’t have to be a gourmet chef to be able to feed yourself and your lady.
- Be on time. Being on time shows that you value other peoples time and efforts.
Go to a secondhand store and get some cookbooks. 1. They are very inexpensive. 2. It will look like you have been cooking for a long time and know what you are doing if your lady sees it. This will impress her and you will score brownie points without spending a bundle.
- Don’t corner people at house parties with your political views believe me if you are conservative there are things you are liberal about and vice versa. Bringing up politics in an incorrect situation makes you look like a buffoon, especially since for every opinion you have or statement you believe is true there are many other things that would make that same statement false.
- Treat every woman with the same amount of respect and humanity that you would your mother, sister, or daughter — and think about why there might have been conditions on how you treated them in the first place. Remember what goes around comes around, and karma may not come the way you expect it.
- RSVP. Let people know that you are coming and bring only the amount of guests that the invite or the person who is holding the gathering is expecting. If the invitation ask for an and one, just bring one other person not all your friends and your children. Recommended read: Table and Restaurant Etiquette – 50 Essential Tips
- Always put a little money away at the end of each month, and not because you’re saving for anything in particular. Saving for a rainy day is always good, but it is good to have a savings even when the sun is shining. You need to pay yourself first and last.
- Learn how to dance, at least a bit. I don’t dance” should no longer be an excuse for anything. This will put you in a better position than most men, I have noticed at a lot of clubs and bars men stand around with a drink in their hand while the women dance together. The men that can dance are the ones that I notice spend less money and leave with the day.
- Never underestimate the great value of unexpected flowers on a day that is otherwise nothing special, especially in long-term relationships. This is not only for the lady that you are dating, you should give flowers to your mom and other ladies that you are related to.
- Take selfies!!!!! Guys have just as much a right to look and feel good about themselves as anyone else. If you want a selfie, take a selfie! (NO DUCK LIPS) Just don’t be a hypocrite about other people who like to do it, too.
- Do not be loud or disruptive –Gentlemen do not use loud voices in public. No one likes the guy that is talking so loud that everyone in the store can hear him. It makes others uncomfortable and makes you seem like you are trying to draw attention to yourself. If you are having an argument with someone, do your best to not get overexcited and raise your voice. If you do, you are showing that you have a very short temper and are not able to carry a tough conversation without losing it. Gentlemen know how to control their emotions and temper. Be slow to anger – Rather than immediately getting defensive and angry, try analyzing the situation and seeing it for what it really is. If a store clerk has accidentally given you too little change, do not lash out in anger the demand to speak to the manager and then lash out at the manager. Ask him quietly if he could look into the situation. A gentleman is calm, relaxed, and slow to anger. “Profanity is the effort of a feeble brain to express itself forcibly.”
― Spencer W. Kimball
- All too often, we prefer to hear ourselves speak as opposed to others. In your quest to gentlemanliness, you will do well to remember that listening to others and not interrupting is a show of respect. Listening more than speaking will allow you to develop a response to someone and answer intelligently.
- An occasional slip of the tongue may be alright, but make a point to not cuss repeatedly. Swearing a lot immediately tells all who may hear you that you are a negative person. It makes you look unintelligent and lacking in respectability. “The habitual use of profanity is not progressive, just unimaginative.”
― Ron Brackin
Resolve to make 2017 the year of the Gentleman. Resolve to be a better man, father, brother, uncle, boyfriend, or husband. Do not look at doing these things in terms of being “old fashioned” or “outdated,” but realizing that making your better is timeless.
These 20 things are things that used to be a given in our society and was a habit for most men but things changed with the passage of time.
We don’t need to change just because it’s a new year, but change and get better because, let’s face it — there are some things that prior generations just did better than us.