There is nothing that better reveals our wonderful essence, personality, education, good manners, courtesy and class than the way we eat and behave at a table during meals.
No matter how formal or informal the situation or invitation is, whether with family, friends or colleagues; the practice of the basic ETIQUETTE during meals can never be ignored.
Before we go any further; we must understand that the practice of ETIQUETTE has nothing to do with pretentions; since it refers to the norms and details related to the correct, courteous and responsible behavior we owe to society and to ourselves. It has to do with what is appropriate, tasteful and with reaching supreme EXCELLENCE.
Here some key ETIQUETTE norms and details at the table during meals:
- Discretion and prudence are virtues that must reign at the table and in any situation in life.
- Sensitive subjects should be avoid, especially those related to religion and politics.
- It is our duty to help generate an environment of harmony, respect and easiness. We need to give others a considerate and kind treatment.
- Enter and exit your chair through the right side.
- At all times, keep a straight but natural and relaxed posture.
- Ideally, gentlemen should move over the chair for the ladies to sit. Ladies should respond to that kind gesture with a 'thank you'.
- When it comes to silverware; forks are on the left while knives and the spoon for soup are on the right. We have to start using them from the outside to the inside on each side.
- The bread plate is the small one on the left.
- Bread is never cut with a knife, but in small pieces (cut and eat one at a time) with your hands.
- The cups and glasses that belong to your seat are those on the right.
- Place your napkin on your lap and use it gently after each zip of your beverage.
- Cut and eat piece by piece. The pieces or amount of food in your fork should be small.
- If in need to go to the toilettes or leave momentarily; excuse yourself and place your napkin on your chair.
- Bring the food to your mouth with ease, not the contrary.
- Avoid making noise while eating, nor talk with food in your mouth.
- Do not place your elbows on the table.
- Never brush or fix your hair, put on make-up, touch or scratch your face or any body part while in the table, or in front of others!
- Electronic devices should not be used during a meal, nor should be placed on the table. That also applies to bags or any other object.
- When is your time to leave, excuse yourself, thank the host and the company, and place your napkin on the table.
*Image by Pecoraro.
Remember, any kind of exaggeration or excess always goes against the wonderful principles and essence of ETIQUETTE.
If you love EXCELLENCE, practice ETIQUETTE.
LIFE IS A RUNWAY!