Rule breakers have more fun…
…but not during COVID-19. Now more than ever, it’s important to follow the specific guidelines set by health experts to protect both yourself and others from the virus. But what should you do if you happen to run into a rule breaker, whether they be intentional about it or not? Keeping these tips in mind will ensure a smooth transition into the post-coronavirus world we find ourselves living in.
Use your words
Sometimes, the most simple solutions are the ones that are the most often overlooked. If someone is breaking social distancing rules around you, explain to them why you would rather follow the guidelines. “Back up [your reasoning] with facts,” says psychotherapist Jennifer Tomko. “Sometimes education can help change someone’s mind.” Although this approach may not always work, as Tomko notes, it’s worth a try before deciding whether or not to remove yourself from the situation.
Avoid direct confrontation
In handling uncomfortable situations such as this one, it’s always best to be polite. Using a kind tone of voice rather than a harsh one can go a long way. “The best advice when dealing with social distance rule breakers is to assume (or at least pretend) the infraction is innocent and not malicious and to use a tone that’s non-judgemental and value-neutral,” says Nick Leighton, an etiquette expert. Tomko agrees: “Try to reserve your impulse to harshly correct others. This often just turns into a conflict.” Kill them with kindness!