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Is Politeness A Waste Of Time? – Identifying The Different Kinds

“Politeness is to human nature what warmth is to wax.” — Arthur Schopenhauer

Do you think being polite is a waste of time?
Well, it really depends on the situation and where you draw the lines between genuine politeness, politeness for its own sake, and fake politeness. Also depends on if you mean the way someone acts or the way they speak.

I’ll give you some examples.

If someone holds up doors, tells you that you look well, asks you how your weekend was, etc and they’re just being genuinely polite and want to that for their own sake, it’s fine.

They’ll probably even accept it if you tell them that you appreciate the gestures but ask them to please stop since it’s a waste of time in your mind.

Someone else does and says the same things out of habit. They might be a bit taken aback since they don’t necessarily know they’re doing it, but will generally accept it too.

Then we’ve got those who are doing it in order to get something from you. Well, they’re truly wasting both their time and yours. Also, they might be more likely to start acting meanly toward you instead.

Now, if it’s an open and honest relationship discussing the level of politeness shouldn’t be a problem.

Top Hat, Ok, Wink

Hats off to ye!

However, if you’re only polite during interviews and dates this leads me to believe you see that there is some benefit to this kind of behavior. At least up until a certain point.

What about once you’ve started that job or gotten into a relationship? Should you only then show your true colors?

Do you feel this is fair? Or should you be more open and up front with what you feel so that you can focus on surrounding yourself with people and an environment where you’re allowed to be you, politeness or not?

I don’t think it’s a case of either or. I think it’s a case of finding balance.

Sometimes being polite can in fact grant you access to information that being straight-forward won’t. You never know, that knowledge could end up saving you even more time.

If you find politeness to be a waste of time I suspect is that you are a no-nonsense kind of person, which is alright. There’s a place for that.

But please remember that politeness has its place too.

Where do you draw the line for when politeness goes too far?

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