Surviving Social Dilemmas

Be ladylike – in action, in word, and in deed – no matter what situation you are put in.  


Hearing bad comments about you when attending a gathering or unexpectedly meeting someone you’ve been avoiding are just some of the circumstances you never want to be in. However, if it does, you should be able to think fast and smart about what to do to survive the social dilemma. According to Marty Nemko Ph.D., “One way to improve our ethics is to example arguments on both sides of common ethical dilemmas.”


Very often, women who are caught in these awkward circumstances when in social gatherings feel panicky and sometimes just zone out.  Learning how to get out of the situation with your poise and dignity intact is essential not to lose face.


Meeting Friends Of Friends That You Are Uncomfortable With

It is one situation that is hard to avoid.  The best thing you can do is keep looking you’re interested in.  Make an effort to know them better. You’ll never know what’s behind the surface.  You might be missing the opportunity by pushing away a good friendship just based on false impressions.  Starting a conversation, no matter how awkward, might let you discover a few things that you have in common.  

If things are not going well and you really are not into them, you can excuse yourself politely by

  •    Pretending you have an emergency call that you need to answer.  
  •    Telling them that you need to get a drink is a skillful way of avoiding them.

These are just some techniques for you to look friendly while trying to escape their company. “In an ideal world, love is fair, equal, reciprocated, and unchanging. But the hard truth of life is that your reality is not always the same as other people’s reality,” according to Kimberly Russell M.A., M.S.Ed.

Jealous Officemates For Bagging Big Accounts

Don’t ignore your envious officemates and never come back to them with negativity.  If you got proof, you could tell it to your boss but never do irresponsible talks.  If you can’t say something positive, better keep your silence.

One smart way to deal with them is to talk to your boss about assigning a project to your colleague whom you think can handle the responsibility.  If it’s not possible, then at least you can request if they can be assigned to your team, so that you can work together and they can come to know you more.  


Seeing An Angry Neighbor Who Is Always Arguing With Someone On The Street

You cannot always pretend that you don’t see or you don’t hear.  Be sure to react the nicest way possible or greet him with a delightful smile.  A sincere smile and a friendly gesture easily beat an angry mood.


Gracefully Turn Down An Invitation


You cannot always say “yes” to every invitation, but saying “no” is just so hard to do.   Knowing what you value most in your life – family, friendship, career, health – will help you decide without feeling guilty about it.  

You can always turn down an invitation cordially and ethically.  Properly informing that you have more important things scheduled prior is something invitees will understand.  


People who lack etiquette lack proper social communication skills.  Practicing the art of pausing and thinking when caught in situations that can build or ruin a relationship is a must to survive social dilemmas gracefully. As for Susan Krauss Whitbourne Ph.D., “Weigh risks against benefits.” Never allow your instinct defense mechanism to make you react negatively or turn you into someone disrespectful. Being on top of the situation should always be your goal.   


A smart woman is someone who doesn’t just look smart, but also thinks smart and acts smart!