Graciousness was once encouraged and cultivated. It was a sign of good character, and to be called gracious was a compliment of the highest order. Anyone can learn to say the right words, or do the right thing at the right time.
But graciousness goes beyond politeness. It is a sincere desire to make others feel valued and respected. It involves being courteous and agreeable, even when you disagree. Graciousness doesn’t cost a thing, but it can buy a world of goodwill.
In their open letter to Sasha and Malia Obama, Jenna and Barbara Bush remind us what graciousness looks like in practice. Their sweet remembrances of times past as children in the White House give us a glimpse into a world that few know. They encourage Sasha and Malia to use their experiences in the White House to shape their future plans as they begin to step out of their parents’ shadows …