Don’t believe everything you hear. My grandmother was a big believer in two sides to every story and not jumping to conclusions. She also believed in making sure that any story had facts supporting it. She would get so angry at work when people would discuss something without basis. And when her grandchildren did it, we heard about it. “If you’re going to talk about something you do not know intimately, your conclusions are fairy tales.” She was right.
Don’t interrupt, you have two ears and one mouth. Listen more than talk. I think this is clear. You can say a lot simply through listening.
Seja gentil- That’s Portuguese for, “be kind”. I don’t think I ever heard my grandmother say a disparaging word about anyone. She believed that kindness builds many bridges. In today’s climate, I often hear myself saying, “Seja gentil”.
Sometimes you don’t win, be a lady and lose with grace. My grandmother was all about grace. She embodied it. Through how she dressed, how she spoke, her actions, she was grace. When she disagreed or felt like she got the short end of the stick, she never complained. I know for me when I was in a very difficult situation, being a sore loser would have been easier. However, she’d counter that with, “If you celebrate the other's success, you’ll find that losing is learning.”
If you want to know something about a person, ask them. This was one of my favorites. It really goes back to the first point.
Read, a lot. My grandmother was a voracious reader. I never saw her without a book in her hand, unless she was cooking. She attributed reading to her expanded vocabulary and would joke with me that for a third grader, she was pretty darn smart. I couldn’t agree more. I learned some of my most valuable lessons from her. I’m grateful for that every day.
Who are the women you celebrate?