Being a man today is like your average Facebook relationship status: it’s friggin’ complicated. Women are more emancipated than ever, and this social change has given men the freedom to explore all facets of their lives be it in their careers, relationships and passions. But with this unprecedented liberty, comes greater confusion. To help you along, here’s the second part of our guide to being a modern gentleman. If you missed the first part, check it out here.
11. Practice discretion: Social media offers temptation to share just about every aspect of your life, but learn from Robbie William’s mistakes. Oversharing only makes you look like an attention whore. No one needs to see what your wife looks like when she's in labour. No. One.
12. Laugh at yourself: If people poke fun at you, take it in your stride. You don’t want to be the guy with the stick up his arse who can’t take a joke. And if you can’t think of a witty comeback, don’t bother trying. It follows that when you want to make a joke, it’s better to poke fun at yourself, not others. Self-deprecating humour is the best kind of humour.
13. Be content, not complacent: Appreciate what you have and count your blessings in life. But it doesn’t mean resting on your laurels. Working hard for what you want makes any achievement that much sweeter.
14. Be punctual: Don’t be THAT guy who is perpetually “on the way” or “stuck in traffic”. Having a smartphone doesn’t give you the licence to keep others waiting when you’ve already agreed on a time to meet. It’s bloody annoying and bad manners. Don’t assume other people’s time is more important than your own.
15. Know when to stop: This rule applies to just about everything from drinking alcohol to getting physical with women, talking about yourself to maxing out your credit.
16. Ditch the airs: No one likes a pretentious schmuck. Sure, you may be a connoisseur of wine, watches or women, but it doesn’t entitle you to be a snob. Comment on other people’s tastes without an invitation, and you will soon find yourself uninvited.
17. Always smell good: They say scents stick in our minds longer than any visual memory. Be the man who isn’t associated with body odour or sweat. Even better, find your signature scent and stick to it.
18. Know the art of the call: Texting may be the normal mode of communication these days, but it is also a minefield of miscommunication. A gentleman knows how to communicate, so don’t be afraid to dial when the occasion calls for it. Furthermore, calling is always much more sincere than any emoticon-laced text apology. *sad face*
19. Dole out compliments and criticism wisely: Compliments are a great way of warming yourself to people, but if you go around a party saying “Nice shoes!” to just about everybody, that’s just cheap flattery. Similarly, if you feel the need to criticise, make sure your feedback is clear and constructive, and given discreetly. Treat your words with weight, and it's more likely that they will be heard.
20. Let things go: A modern gentleman knows not to bear grudges. He may not forget, but knows how to forgive. As poet George Herbert once said, “Living well is the best revenge.”
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