20 February 2012

Attributes of the modern gentleman

Guest post from Clare Duncan of Grace and Poise

Clare Attributes of the modern gentleman

Just as we are aware that graceful, elegant women are a rare find in society today we also realise that men, not just men in general but true, eloquent, respectful gentlemen may seem to be even more of a rarity.  It may be even relevant to ask has our modern, feminist-influenced generation lost what it is to be a gentlemen at home, at work and abroad.  As yesteryear’s generation of true gentlemen fades into history I wonder if those values taught by their father’s and passed on to them are remember or even considered today?

Today I’m sharing with you a few selected attributes that I believe take part in the formation today’s gentlemen.  Just as today’s modern woman can embrace elegance, style and class in her day-to-day life the man of today would do well to embody a similar line values and characteristics.

The general perspective of a gentlemen is one who is eloquent of speech, exhibits a suave, classic style and a charming manner to boot.  I readily agree that these characteristics are certainly desirable and somewhat sought-after in a gentleman but they are not necessarily the values I recognise first.

When I think of a gentleman I think of someone who is grounded in his day-to-day life yet pursues his existence with a sense of purpose, determination and energy.  He displays respect to each contact that he meets – strangers, colleagues, friends and family.  He carries a sense of integrity and honesty in all his dealings.  Although embodying a strong masculine character he also carries with him a gentle a sense of care, courtesy and kindness throughout his life.

Each of these attributes unite together strengthening the the other like links in a chain, interlocking and creating a man of a strong character and noble standing.   The qualities I have compiled here are just the beginning…

Integrity |in?tegrit?| the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness
Integrity encapsulates the overall form of a gentleman.  He is honest in all of his transactions, reliable when called, truthful when speaking and upright in all interactions.  Each decision is formed on principle rather than passion.  Behind every calling in life he stands ready and able, both in the planned and expected events but also in the challenges that surprise.  A standard of principles form the backbone of his life.  Trends, peer-pressure and company do not affect his choices.  Promises are kept and treasured.

Respect |ri?spekt| due regard for the feelings, wishes, rights, or traditions of others
An integral part in every gentleman is that he should know how to treat others with respect.  He respects those around him of all backgrounds, cultures, status and political views.  This doesn’t mean he has to agree with everyone and every opinion.  A well-grounded man will form own his own opinions but will respect others equally.  Not only are others treated with respect but also himself.  Never taking the life he has been so graciously given for granted he values the opportunities and challenges that arrest his attention.  Perhaps one of the greatest signs of a respectful man is his punctuality.  Having people wait for you is the equivalent of telling them that you don’t care about them.

Responsibility |ri?späns??bil?t?| the state or fact of having a duty to deal with something
Every gentleman has a purpose, a plan and a drive to fulfill an ambition.  Upon the shoulders of every man rests a weight of manly responsibility.  From a young age this is passed down from father-to-son.  As a born protector and provider he is born with a purpose.  Whatever his lot in life he takes it on with courage, strength and determination.  The challenges that he faces and the decisions (both positive and negative) change and mature him.  He learns from the past and pursues the future with eagerness and enthusiasm.  Words and actions spoken and committed are taken into full account and he never blames someone else for his own doing.

Care |ke(?)r|the provision of what is necessary for the health, welfare, maintenance, and protection of someone or something
Courtesy |?k?rt?s?| the showing of politeness in one’s attitude and behavior toward others

In some strange way society has weaved the notion that a gentlemanly persona of a man defines him as “weak”.  This is a absurd idea.  A man who is responsible enough to care for those both in personal life with a sense of kindness and concern and also those who he comes into contact on an daily basis is far from weak.  A gentlemen is always ready to lend a helping hand, share a word of encouragement and puts others first.  The ways to show you care are limitless.  Be creative and you’ll be amazed at the results you receive.

As previously mentioned the attributes desired of a gentleman are endless.  What about other important qualities such as appearance, culture, conversation, etiquette, courage, or intelligence?  As a lady I know from my personal experience one can never stop learning, growing and developing.  I hope that it is the same of a gentleman.  Elevate yourself above the rabble and be unashamed to be a gentlemen.  The world around you will appreciate and delight in such a rarity and the perks will most definitely surprise you!