Behave Yourself During Meals!

Five table manners to take notice of

By Kumaraguru / 3 February 2022

Meal Pokok.Asia

It’s time to eat with proper manners. Source: Unsplash

  • Table manners can be a reflection of yourself to others.
  • It is a part of life that should be practiced religiously by everyone.
  • Here are five table manners that should be focussed on. 

One simple rule: Forks go to the left of the plate, whereas knives and spoons go to the right. Knowing only this isn’t going to cut you a slack at the dining table if you are poorly educated about table manners. 

As Shakespears once said, “Manners maketh man”, and that includes table manners too, my friend! It is all fun and games until you are misunderstood or judged for the way you behave while having a meal with others. Dear parents, always remember that table manners should be taught from a young age to make it a habit in the long run.

I hate to break it to you, but if you lack table manners, you are definitely giving bad impressions of yourself to others. Regardless of family members, friends or strangers, look out for how you are behaving to avoid making others on the same table with you feel uncomfortable. Concerned yet? Here, let me list out a few table manners to pay attention to so that you can save your days from embarrassing moments during an enjoyable meal.


1.Wait for everyone

I understand that hunger can make a person go wild, but hey, hold your horses. The most basic courtesy of having a meal with others is waiting for everyone’s food to be served. After all, you are there to enjoy the food together, so what is the hurry? In a way, this gesture showcases the respect you have for the people around the table.

Oh, come on, you don’t want to be the only one munching on your food whilst others are hungrily waiting for theirs. Doesn’t it seem a little awkwardly off to you? Therefore, the first rule to achieve the highest order of table manners is to wait for everyone to be seated and served, then start digging in!


2.Stop talking while chewing

Note to self: Don’t talk with a mouth full of food. 

We tend to do it unconsciously quite often, but this needs to be addressed strictly for the good of all of us. Talking while chewing does not only make you look unpleasant but also makes it hard to hear you. You don’t want to be changing your dinner plan into a live beatboxing performance, don’t you?

To avoid this from happening, make sure not to ask questions to others when they are chewing. This is said so because people tend to respond immediately to a direct conversation even with food in their mouth. Let’s aim to avoid this, shall we? And also, you don’t want to be spitting your food out while talking. That’s just embarrassing, man.


3.Picking your teeth during meals

It baffles me that some people out there still think that it is acceptable to pick their teeth in the presence of their dining companions. That’s intolerable for sure! As disrespectful as it is, are you sure you are okay with people watching you cleaning your teeth right away from your meal?

I would say that toothpicks are meant to be used privately to retain your image. I am pretty sure none of us would want to be portrayed as a repulsive character, especially on a lunch or dinner date!

In addition, try your best not to noisily clean your teeth with your tongue at the end of a meal. The clicking sounds that might echo from the table could make people feel uneasy about being present at the same place with you. In simple words, don’t be gross and be considerate of others’ emotions as well as your standards.


4.Take what you can reach

Meal Pokok.Asia

Happiness is having a respectful meal together with your close ones. Source: Uchicago News

Have you ever experienced hands moving all over the table while you are having your meal? It’s interrupting, isn’t it? Be reminded to always reach for something that is within a decent sight from where you are sitting. This is so because constantly standing up and reaching over the food, condiments, or beverages beyond your personal space on a table tends to create an annoyance for others. Others might be too polite to address this, but let’s have some sense, shall we?

Instead, ask for help from other diners to pass the items to you. By doing so, you not only secure a calm atmosphere during the meal, but also get to save yourself from embarrassment of dropping food on others. And, saying ‘please’ isn’t going to hurt you.


Don’t wave utensils

You can wave them goodbye later, but not while eating. Restrain yourself from gesturing with utensils in your hands, especially the ones you are using to eat. One, that’s dangerous; Two, you are not trying to get the bits and pieces of your food flying all across the table. Harry Potter has left the chat. Quit this habit because it ain’t sexy no more, and you are not a wizard to begin with. Talk freely, but let’s leave the utensils out of it. 

To aid you with this, how about:

When you have taken a bite of your meal, put your utensils down, chew slowly then you can start ‘conducting the orchestra performance’ as you wish. If you know, then you know. Use utensils for what they are made for. Moreover, you don’t want to be the rude one, right?


Have some standards!

Meal Pokok.Asia

Make every meal enjoyable with manners. Source: Pinterest

Hey, table manners should not be taken lightly as people are inclined to judge you based on it. Teaching table manners to kids is an essential part of parenting that should be focussed attentively during family meals.

With this, children growing up with the proper guidance on table manners would be able to socialize with others confidently, without the fear of offending others dining in with them. Isn’t that relieving? All at the cost of proper education on table manners. That being said, regardless of your age, respect the food and company you get! Life is too short to be ignorant.

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