The people's voice of reason

11 Commandments for Relating to People

1. Speak to people. There is nothing as nice as a cheerful word or greeting.

2. Smile at people. It takes seventy-two muscles to frown, only fourteen to smile.

3. Call people by name. The sweetest music to anyone’s ears is the sound of his or her own name.

4. Be friendly and helpful.

5. Be cordial. Let’s speak and act as though we are grateful people.

6. Be genuinely interested in people. If we try, we can like almost everyone.

7. Be generous with praise – cautious with criticism.

8. Be considerate with the feelings of others. There are usually three sides to a controversy: ours, the other person’s, and the right one.

9. Be alert to give service. What counts most in life is what we do for others.

10. Add to this a good sense of humor, a big dose of patience and a dash of humility, and you will be rewarded many fold!

11. Never, never, never gossip.

Here’s why:

“My name is Gossip. I have no respect for justice. I maim without killing. I break hearts and ruin lives. I am cunning and malicious and gather strength with age. The more I am quoted, the more I am believed. I flourish at every level of society.

My victims are helpless. They cannot protect themselves against me because I have no face.

To track me down is impossible. The harder you try, the more elusive I become.

I am nobody’s friend.

Once I tarnish a reputation, it is never the same. I topple governments, wreck marriages and ruin careers – I cause sleepless nights, heartaches and indigestion. I spawn suspicion and generate grief.

I make innocent people cry in their pillows.

Even my own name hisses…

I make headlines and headaches.”

Before you repeat a story ask yourself, is it true? Is it fair? Is it necessary?

If not – don’t repeat it.

If you practice these 11 commandments, I guarantee you it will dramatically improve all of your relationships!

Dr Lester Spencer

Lead Pastor, Saint James Church

Note: These are excerpts from Dr. Spencer’s book, “Perceptions: A Collection of Favorites” Volume 2.


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