Valentine’s Day Dating Etiquette

Valentine's DayWith Valentine’s Day, many people’s thoughts turn to love and romance. That is equally true for young adults looking to find someone special.

Whether this is your first time dating or not, following the rules of etiquette for dating shows respect and consideration for others – and that is attractive. If you pay attention to these simple rules and conventions, you will be more successful and confident in your dating abilities.

Watch your distance

Everyone has an area around them that is their personal space and if other people get too close, the person will feel uncomfortable and not even know why. The specific size of the space varies between cultures and individuals, but In North America, most people require about two feet of personal space. When you are talking to someone, keep a comfortable distance between you. If you move closer and the person steps away or looks uncomfortable, take a step backward to allow them more personal space. When you allow people the space they need, they tend to feel more comfortable spending time with you.

Take a hint

When you are talking with someone, pay attention to subtle social cues indicating whether you are welcome to join in or if it is a private engagement. For example, if someone tells you they are meeting a friend for lunch, don’t assume you are invited to follow along to the restaurant unless they specifically ask you to join them.

Pay attention to your personal hygiene

You may grow accustomed to your body odour, but if you haven’t washed or brushed your teeth, other people won’t enjoy being around you. For close encounters over coffee, pay attention to your oral hygiene. And don’t think you can cover up a missed shower by being more liberal with your cologne or perfume. You will only make it worse and may even trigger allergies in those around you. With fresh breath and a clean body, you are certainly headed in the right direction for a sweet conversation.

Know when to pull out your wallet

These days, the rules about who pays when on a date can be confusing. Keep this rule in mind: If you invite someone out, whether you are male or female, be prepared to pick up the tab. If money is tight, keep your budget in mind when choosing your venue.

Don’t be a stalker

If someone turns down your invitation to go out or to date, don’t get upset or follow them in hopes of changing their mind. As disappointing as it may seem, know when to take “No” for an answer. Follow the rule of three: if you invite someone out on three different occasions and are turned down each time, it’s time to take the hint. The person is not interested and reluctant to say so. Continuing to pursue them is not likely to change their mind. Move on to other prospects and, if they are interested in getting together with you, they will make the next offer. Remember…

Every cloud has a silver lining. Who knows who you will meet next …

Dating Etiquette for Men

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Discover the Top 10 Secrets to Wooing the girl of your dreams with class from the moment you pick up your date. This etiquette guide covers such topics as picking up your date, compliments, arriving at the restaurant, addressing wait staff, and much more.

Dating Etiquette for Men

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Dining Etiquette Tips for any Occasion

With all the dinner parties and gatherings, dinner parties offer a wonderful opportunity to teach children about social and dining etiquette.

If you are hosting one, you can recruit your children to set the table and use this time to review each piece in a table setting, what it is used for, and where it is placed in relation to the diner. Whether you are hosting or attending a dinner, take some time before the event to review basic table manners.

Family Christmas dinner

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Dressing for Holiday Parties

holidaydressingNothing ruins the fun of a holiday party more than feeling self-conscious or out of place and the clothes you are wearing play a big part in how comfortable you feel. When you choose the right outfit for an event, you’re free to enjoy yourself. But knowing what is appropriate for each holiday event can be tricky.

Use these tips to help you make the right choices.

1. Pick an outfit that is suitable for the occasion

If you arrive at a black tie event wearing jeans or at a backyard barbeque in a ball gown or tuxedo, you will feel awkward no matter how good you look. Before you decide what to wear, check the invitation. A formal event will typically indicate the dress code. If it doesn’t specify, you can gather clues by the time of the event and the location. Events in the evening are usually more formal than those in the afternoon, and a formal venue, such as a dance hall or up-scale restaurant, warrants more formal attire than an event held in a home or office.

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Christmas Holiday Gift Giving

Gift givingChristmas holiday gift giving is a custom filled with noble intentions that sometimes have the unintended effect of sapping the cheer from shoppers. At Christmastime, we set out to choose gifts that show our affection and appreciation, but the process of finding the perfect gift can create stress. That said, to help get you started we have some tips for you to keep your holiday gift giving pleasurable and stress free!

Keep the holiday cheer in your gift giving with these simple tips:

  • Start early – don’t leave your shopping to the last minute hoping that the perfect gift will materialize. You will end up amongst thousands of other frenzied shoppers abandoning your budget, forgetting your good intentions, and buying anything you can find.
  • Create a budget and stick to it. Holiday gifts don’t have to cost a lot to be meaningful and valued by the recipient.
  • Make it personal. Before you head to the mall, spend some time thinking about each person on your list – What are their interests? What could they use?
  • A word of caution for on-line shoppers. Order early to avoid the item being, “Out of Stock.”

Still not sure what to buy? The following list of gift suggestions and ideas may help get you started as you think about the loved ones on your list:

For the avid reader

  • Books. Of course, if you don’t know what genre they prefer or what they have already read, consider a gift card for a bookstore.
  • For a book lover who has a long commute, consider an audio book they can play while driving.
  • Bookmarks are available in a range of unique styles and quality and make wonderful small gifts, stocking-stuffers, or gift tags.
  • Out-of-print and collector editions would be treasured by the book collector in your life.

For teens and young adults

  • Anyone who has recently started driving would appreciate a gas card.
  • For the University student, a gift card to the University book store may be appreciated.
  • Gift card to a favourite coffee shop.
  • Gift card to their favourite clothing store.
  • A pre-paid Visa/MasterCard to purchase their own gift of choice.
  • Dinner and movie tickets.
  • For those who ski or snowboard, a day pass/tickets for the local hill.

Elderly relatives or parents

  • Lambskin slippers.
  • Blanket wrap or house jacket.
  • Silver photo frame with a special photo of a special memory, perhaps, or an updated photo of your family.

Family and close friends who live far away or overseas

  • Calendar or picture book of the area where you live.
  • A photo montage of your family during the year. Photos can now be easily added to calendars, DVDs, mugs, and other items.
  • Souvenir ornament that highlights a meaningful special event or yearly marker.
  • A food item or treat that is only available in the area where you live.

For the host/hostess

  • Seasonal bouquet or table centerpiece.
  • A fine wine or after-dinner liqueur.
  • Specialty chocolates or cookies.

Other alternatives

  • Donations to your favourite charity instead of giving gifts to others (it’s good etiquette to let people know you are doing this; mention it in a Christmas card or make a special card).
  • Giving the valuable gift of your time speaks volumes.

We hope this gives you ideas. If you would like to know more about Christmas traditions, ask James Cooper at He is a hive of information!

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Radio Interview: Halloween Etiquette

News 1130

Halloween vs The Etiquette Expert: The Reckoning

by Mike Lloyd

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – You know what’s scary? Misjudging your Halloween party hosts this weekend and wearing the wrong costume!

Is it a no-holds-barred, adults-only kind of party — or maybe something a little more family friendly? Etiquette expert Elizabeth Burnett suggests you should probably figure that out ahead of time.

“If you’re hosting a party, be clear with your invitation if it is a family, adult or gathering for all,” says the owner of Elizabeth Etiquette.

“If you’re attending, take a little time to think about your costume and dress appropriately for the party. Is it for work or is it a gathering of friends? Should your costume be a little more conservative or can you really go wild with the makeup?”

If you’re unsure, Burnett has a rule of thumb:

“Don’t expose too much skin and don’t expose too little,” she tells NEWS 1130, suggesting full face and body costumes should have some kind of opening to allow your hosts or trick-or-treaters to know who’s behind the mask.

Read the full interview »

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Halloween Etiquette Tips

Halloween Etiquette Tips

As Halloween approaches, you may be wondering if there are any etiquette rules for Halloween. You will be happy to know that, as with most communal occasions, there is. In fact, there are two sets of etiquette rules: one for those costumed trick-or-treaters and another for people distributing the treats.

Our tips this month provide some guidelines for all those little ghouls and goblins as they parade from house to house, as well as for the people at the houses handing out treats.

Read my interview on News 1130 »

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Teaching Gratitude to Children

Gratitude is an important life skill that can have a lifelong impact on overall happiness and life satisfaction.

Boy thank youNot only does it foster feelings of empathy and consideration for others, but it reduces feelings of entitlement and chronic disappointment all too common in our busy, self-indulged society. Nonetheless, teaching children to be grateful can be challenging.

Simply saying “Please” and “Thank You” and sending thank you cards is not the same as being grateful; although you might do those things, and good etiquette suggests that you should.

Gratitude results when you notice and appreciate what you have. Unfortunately, many people don’t notice what they have until it’s gone and the tricky part of teaching gratitude is encouraging children to appreciate what they have without feeling guilty for having it.

Try the following suggestions for encouraging your children to notice and appreciate what they have.

Be a Good Role Model

Children learn much more through observation than from being told so make sure you model gratitude. Say “Please” and “Thank you” to your children, let them see you happily writing thank you cards, and express your appreciation for what you have often.

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Etiquette Training for Miss BC 2017

Miss BC 2017 crowning

Congratulations to all!
Miss BC 2017

It is my pleasure to announce that Elizabeth Etiquette was once again the official etiquette trainer for Miss BC, Mrs BC and Miss Teen BC this year. During the three-day event in July all of the participants were provided with professional training in areas such as public speaking, community development, health, fitness and nutrition, choreography, assertiveness training, media relations, self-defense and more.

Applications for Miss, Miss Teen, Mrs. and Junior Miss BC 2018 are now being accepted. Visit Miss BC website »

Also, as part of the 15th Anniversary celebration, the Miss, Miss Teen and Mrs BC Pageant created a new category: Junior Miss BC*.

*Girls aged 9-12 were invited to participate in this exciting event, where each participant received professional training in areas such as public speaking, manners and etiquette, anti-bullying and online safety, positive body images and vision boards, community involvement and more.

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Instant Text Messaging Etiquette

Holding phoneText messages, e-mails, and instant messages are the most common forms, today, of sharing news and communicating with others on a daily basis. The messages are brief and use an abbreviated form of English. They can also be a quick and fun way to contact family and friends. However, there are some drawbacks that one should be aware of.

Here is the etiquette for the use of instant messaging:

  • One can get carried away with texting and e-mails, and waste hours instant messaging when they could be doing productive activities
  • It is not polite to text our friends when it causes us to ignore the people we are with
  • Spending time with family, in school, attending activities, participating in a sport, sitting down to a meal, socializing in a group, or watching a movie are NOT times to start sending messages
  • It is polite to give our undivided attention to the people we are with.
  • We use clipped grammar when we write text messages, but that does not mean we can discard good grammar. Good grammar is vital to good communication and should be a priority when speaking and in the written word

Note: Nothing replaces good face-to-face communication. Part of the fun of life is being with people and sharing.

And don’t forget to remember your manners when texting in public.

Sharing Something

Life is sharingSharing is when you allow someone to use something of yours or when you use something that belongs to someone else. The etiquette rules for sharing are:

  • Ask before you take
  • Say, “Please, thank you and you’re welcome”
  • It is polite to “take turns”
  • When you are the person borrowing an item, make sure you treat the item with care and not damage it in any way
  • Return the item when the person you are borrowing from says they want it back
  • Make sure you hand the item back to the person. Do not just “leave it somewhere’’
  • Do NOT ever lend something to someone, when the item is not yours

NOTE: Sharing shows a generous spirit that is a really nice trait to possess.

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