Society is always changing, and along with that comes new and different societal expectations. Regardless of the situation, keep a few overriding guidelines in mind to gracefully get through any situation.

Respect others.

Nearly every social situation can be smoother just by showing respect for other people. Think about how your actions affect others around you.

With technology, that means not having conversations on speaker phone in public and focusing on the people right in front of you, in real life, to instead of scrolling through social media. At the gym, be open to others working in with your sets, instead of claiming a machine all to yourself. Ask the person sitting behind you on the plane if you can recline your seat. Be on time, and don’t be a no-show when you commit to being somewhere.

Honor diversity.

People deserve to be treated equally. That means there’s no reason to only hold the door open for certain people or exclude people from conversations or activities because of their gender, race, ableness, or age. But it also means being aware that everyone is an individual. Avoid making judgments without fully knowing someone’s story or situation.

Safety first.

In our fast-paced world, we feel the need to do everything and be everywhere, but stop for a moment for safety. Before responding to that text while you’re driving, tuning out the world because you’re plugged into music, and balancing all those cups of coffee for the office staff so you only have to make one trip from the break room, take a moment before you act. Your safety and the safety of others matters above all else.