12 things naturally classy people avoid doing in public

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Money can’t buy class – just look at social media and reality television and you’ll know it’s true.

Anyone can have millions of dollars, wear designer outfits, and dine in five-star restaurants. But being truly classy is never just about wealth or status.

To spot a genuinely classy person, you’ve got to look at their behavior, how they present themselves in public, and how they treat everyone around them, regardless of their standing in life.

If you want to appear more classy, here are some of the most common things that naturally classy people avoid that you should, too.

1) Forget Their Manners

Manners maketh man — or in this case manners maketh class.

Classy people never forget basic manners and good etiquette wherever they go and who they’re with.

You’d be surprised how simply saying “Please” and “Thank you” to your waiter can go a long way in making you appear well-mannered.

When out and about, classy people hold themselves to proper etiquette.

Common practices like not swearing in public (and especially in front of children), following the dress code, and following table etiquette are some ways to improve how others see you.

2) Let Their Ego Rule

As I said earlier, money can’t buy class.

And I’ve found that one of the reasons for this has to be the inflated egos some people have when they’ve achieved a certain level of wealth and fame.

If you try pulling the “Do you know who I am?” card on waiters or service staff, know that everyone who heard you won’t be looking at you and thinking, “Wow, what a classy person!”

Classy people know that, at the end of the day, they’re no better than everyone else.

The world does not revolve around them, which means they’re not above being nice to staff and people around them, regardless of social status or wealth.

3) Flaunt Their Money (Or Live Above Their Means)

Wealth does not translate to class, so showing off your wealth doesn’t make you any more classy than someone with less money.

And in a similar case, living above your means to show off says less about you as a classy person and more about your poor financial decisions.

The French coined the term “nouveau riche” or “new money” to explain this perfectly.

These are the people who make being wealthy their entire personality.

In contrast, you have what’s known as the “old money class” from people who are wealthy but are confident in their self-image that they don’t need to prove it by flaunting their money.

To look more classy, always go for the lowkey mindset.

4) Constantly Compare Themselves with Others

If you’re constantly basing your self-worth on comparing what you have with others, you’ll never be happy.

Classy people understand this, which is why they focus less on what others have that they don’t and more on what they have.

Don’t get me wrong. Most classy people do have people they look up to and want to emulate—maybe Michelle Obama, maybe Natalie Portman, maybe Amal Clooney.

But what they do not do is compare themselves to other mortals and feel bad about themselves for not having the same X or Y.

A classy person would not spend a single second thinking about this because to her mind, we should aim higher. They also know we all have different paths and different timelines.

They will admire others but never get envious of them.

5) Live for Gossip and Drama

It may be entertaining for some, but gossip, rumors, and internet “tea” is not something classy people will actively keep tabs on.

There are only 24 hours in a day, and people with class aren’t going to waste time or the mental capacity trying to keep up with gossip.

It has nothing to contribute to their lives and can negatively affect how they look and deal with other people.

You can spot a classy person based on how they handle gossip.

They’re the ones who nod and smile because they don’t want to be rude.

They may also try to change the topic to something more important.

6) Follow All the Trends

Keep in mind that trends aren’t just limited to fashion.

When it comes to personality, online content, or what the latest craze is on social media, classy people know when a trend isn’t healthy or appropriate and won’t follow it just because everyone else is doing it.

Trends come and go, but classy people stay true to themselves.

It’s perfectly fine to like some trends, but at the end of the day, there’s still some substance that keeps classy people their own person.

Class means staying true to one’s own style and personality without having to care what others are doing.

7) Air Out Their Dirty Laundry

You may know someone who tends to overshare the most invasive and inappropriate information about themselves on social media.

Some people might think they’re being cute or an open book by posting about these often, but it can come off as being uncouth and attention-seeking.

Classy people will never publicly talk about family drama, feuds, lovers’ quarrels, or anything that’s best kept to themselves, to those involved, or to their doctors or lawyers.

This is because they recognize that letting everyone else know about their dirty laundry isn’t going to help.

And because no one wants to hear about the time you got too wasted that one weekend with your friends.

8) Share Too Many Details About Their Life

Aside from your dirty laundry, sharing generally too much about yourself with anyone is a no-no for classy people.

Security and privacy risk aside, it can come off as unprofessional or inappropriate, depending on the setting you’re in.

In some cases, sharing too much can come off as boastful as some people feel the need to recite a shopping list full of achievements.

Classy people are secure in their self-worth and understand that not everyone needs to know their business.

They don’t hold back simply for the sake of being mysterious, but because they don’t need to prove that their life is great.

9) Control People

Classy people understand that no means no and leaves it at that.

They don’t take “no” to be a challenge to manipulate, guilt-trip, or pressure someone into changing their stance or doing what they want.

Classy people are clear about what they want, and if they don’t get their way, they’re not going to beg people into acquiescing.

People with lots of class understand that there are times they won’t get their way or thing fall out of their control.

Instead of trying to change what’s out of their control, they instead try to make the best out of any situation.

10) Cause a Scene

I personally think there’s nothing more embarrassing than causing a scene.

Some people might like having all eyes on them, but try to imagine how people perceive you while they’re looking at you.

And in many cases, “classy” isn’t the word they’re using when you’re making a spectacle of yourself.

A classy person won’t make a scene just to get attention.

They’re mature enough to keep a calm and level voice and won’t be baited into a public screaming match.

They dress appropriately for any occasion and won’t break the dress code just for attention.

And when people stare at them when they enter a room, it’s because they exude confidence and style.

11) Talk Without Listening

Many people still don’t know the difference between having a conversation and simply waiting for their turn to speak.

They’re the type of people who have their phone in their hand or make no attempt to learn more from what the other person is saying.

These are the people who talk more than listen, and in my experience, you might as well be talking to a brick wall.

Part of being classy involves how you interact with others.

When you’re confident and self-assured in what you know (or don’t know), you’re less interested in what you have to say and more in where the conversation can go.

Classy people actively listen to others’ opinions and wait for them to finish.

12) Please People

Some people often find the need to please people because they want to impress others and thrive off the feeling that everyone likes them.

But not only is this exhausting, but they’ll soon find that it’s impossible to please everyone.

And having to please people all the time can lead people to depend heavily on them even when it’s no longer feasible.

Classy people are polite, but they aren’t pushovers.

They may help you, but they’re not going to bend over backward to please anyone.

They set healthy boundaries for themselves and aren’t afraid to say no when they have to.

They aren’t afraid of an argument to defend themselves, but they won’t resort to offensive words or attacks on a person’s character.

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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