Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and the Importance of Belonging: Recognizing National Civility Month
August celebrates National Civility Month as a way to recognize that people being civil to each other is what makes the world a better place. This holiday was founded to help the world remember to treat others the way we wish to be treated ourselves — with kindness, empathy, and respect.
Why Is Civility Important?
Civility fosters respect
Civility costs nothing and buys everything. Each person wants to be treated fairly and with mutual respect. Civility is a small step that can go a long way in fostering and nurturing a respectful environment and relationships.
Civility enhances one's professional image
Civility is a vital aspect that impacts one’s professional image. It also reflects an organization's overall brand reputation and goodwill.
Civility influences success
Civility and success go hand-in-hand. This success could be in your work, home, or social setup. Being civil inevitably leads to a more successful and content life.
Civility fosters empathy
Practicing civility can actually help you become a more empathic person.
Civility helps to dissociate from negative emotions
When you become more civil, you are able to view situations more objectively, which can help you separate yourself from negative emotions.
Civility makes you logical and fair
Being civil can help you debate and reason with logic and fairness and prevent you from lashing out.
Civility makes you a kinder person
Imbibing civility in your daily life will make you a kinder person towards others.
Civility makes you optimistic
Being civil towards others will eventually instill optimism within you and make you feel much better about external situations.
The meaning of civility is etched in every person’s mind and is a common thread that unites our behavior. As we’re gaining a new understanding of ourselves and the environment around us, we are reaching out to people, sharing our love and care, and being civil to one another. As a way of recognizing and respecting the uniqueness that we all bring to our families, communities, cities and states, civility should be expected as we share differing opinions on multiple topics. It can be very easy to feel that those who do not share your same background, thoughts, beliefs or opinions are “less worthy” of your time, are “outsiders” or “villains”; the negative assumptions are plentiful. During the month of August try to find those things that you have in common, listen to a differing opinion, have a respectful dialogue with someone who sees the world through a different lens than you.
A few ways to do this could be:
- Practice civility yourself
True change begins with us. So, remember to maintain civility in all interactions with other people. Spend time reflecting on your actions, noting how people reacted to them, and figuring out how you can better yourself in this regard.
- Influence others towards civility
Your civility can inspire others, too, like a ripple effect. Be the role model and the standard of decent human behavior, so others around you maintain the same levels of civility.
- Raise awareness about civility together
Talk to people around you about the importance of civility.
As we look at civility through the space of diversity, equity and inclusion, civility is the instrument that fosters the process. Understanding that respecting and demonstrating equality is embracing the fact that diversity is displayed in many characteristics, qualities and thoughts. Inclusion ensures that all of us with these differing characteristics, qualities and thoughts are welcome to the table and all views can be shared and received with respect. During the month of August, let us all challenge ourselves to offer civility to everyone through all interactions.
About LaJeune Adams
PSL’s Cultures and Values give assurance of our organization’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, through ensuring that all stakeholders feel that they belong. By lifting up voices and people, we will create an organization where all stakeholders feel that they are of value. As part of this commitment PSL formed Culture Champions within each community and location within the organization. Culture Champions are PSL representatives empowered with leading the movement of living and teaching our values while embracing DEI initiatives and encouraging others to do the same. As the Corporate Director of Education and Development and DEI Officer, LaJeune Adams is one of the PSL leaders that supports and works directly with the Culture Champions. LaJeune has worked with Presbyterian Senior Living for over 16 years in the roles of Human Resources Manager and Area Human Resources Director prior to her current role.