When I was in high school, our principal hired a woman to talk to our class about etiquette, beauty, fashion, things he thought would interest and benefit our all-girl student body.
While I don’t remember most of what the woman tried to teach us — most of it seemed so old-fashioned and outmoded — I do remember her demonstrating and making us practice how to properly sit down and stand up. For some reason, this lesson has always remained with me and is something I actually utilize every day.
Maybe it was my mother’s neverending plea for us to not flop down on our couch and respect the furniture. Perhaps it was my own desire to be thought of as a graceful person. Whatever the reason, it works and I wish to share my knowledge with you.
How to Sit Down
Don’t turn around and look at the seat before sitting. Learn to calculate the placement of the chair by backing up to it and finding it with the back of you leg. Then sit down while keeping your back straight; do not bend over. Sit first on the edge of your seat then slide back into it. Never cross your legs, never sit on your feet, never sit with your legs open. Tuck one foot behind the other at the ankle and keep your knees together.
How to Stand Up
Getting back up is easier. Slide forward until you are at the edge of the seat, then stand up straight without bending over. Don’t put your weight on your hands or the armrests. If you were sitting at a dinner table, leave your napkin on your chair.
The most important thing to remember is to relax.