In some regards, Ann Landers was like a blogger. Her daily column dispensed advice and answers to questions, for decades. The 10 Commandments of Getting Along with People has been attributed to Ann Landers. While I couldn’t find anything to confirm that, it sounds like the kind of thing she would have written.

  1. Keep skid chains on your tongue; always say less than you think. Cultivate a low, persuasive voice. How you say it counts more than what you say.
  2. Make promises sparingly, and keep them faithfully, no matter what it costs.
  3. Never let an opportunity pass to say a kind and encouraging word to or about somebody. Praise good work, regardless of who did it. If criticism is needed, criticize helpfully, never spitefully.
  4. Be interested in others, their pursuits, their work, their homes and families. Make merry with those who rejoice; with those who weep, mourn. Let everyone you meet, however humble, feel that you regard him as a person of importance.
  5. Be cheerful. Don’t burden or depress those around you by dwelling on your minor aches and pains and small disappointments. Remember, everyone is carrying some kind of a load.
  6. Keep an open mind. Discuss but don’t argue. It is a mark of a superior mind to be able to disagree without being disagreeable.
  7. Let your virtues, if you have any, speak for themselves. Refuse to talk of another’s vices. Discourage gossip. It is a waste of valuable time and can be extremely destructive.
  8. Be careful of another’s feelings. Wit and humour at the other person’s expense are rarely worth it and may hurt when least expected.
  9. Pay no attention to ill-natured remarks about you. Remember, the person who carried the message may not be the most accurate reporter in the world. Simply live so that nobody will believe them. Disordered nerves and bad digestion are a common cause of back-biting.
  10. Don’t be too anxious about the credit due you. Do your best, and be patient. Forget about yourself, and let others “remember.” Success is much sweeter that way.
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