When it comes to the way women treat other women, there are a lot of blurred lines. Itishard to be able to talk to others sometimes because you don’t always know whether you’re helping themorhurting them. There are times when otherpeople wouldn’t want you to do for them what you want others to do for you. So instead, a great rule-of-thumb is a little something known as the five-minute rule.
The five-minute rule does not have to do with food being dropped on the ground and how much time you have to still be socially acceptable to eat it. That is called the five second rule, ya nasty! The five-minute rule corresponds to the etiquette you can use when deciding if something you want to say to another girl is actually uplifting and helpful, or if it’s just rude and uncalled for. It’s not always so easy to tell on the spot, so implementing this is a good, general safety net to always be positive to one another in any type of setting. If you see an issue with them that might be embarrassing that they can fix within five minutes, go ahead and tell them and help a girl out! However, if it’s something that they would have to go home and change, or that could take a long while to fix, then you leave it alone because now, they are made more aware of a problem they can’t do anything about. Let’s put it into perspective to get a better idea:
A girl you see when you walk to one of your classes is wearing a dress, and it got caught on her backpack so you can see some booty- what do you do? It’s an embarrassing position but should you tell her, or leave it be and let her figure it out on her own? You don’t really even know her! The most polite way to go about that is to tell her. You could go up to her and perhaps tell her, and she can fix it within seconds just by moving her backpack and repositioning it. Now you’ve helped her, and didn’t make her feel bad because you were just being nice. That is a simple and sweet example of women helping women. However, there are other situations you could be in where you think you are being helpful, but in reality there is a possibility you are actually hurting their feelings or bringing them down. Let’s say you are about to go into a group meeting and you see another girl who is in that same meeting with you. Before you go in, you notice she has what could be a stain on her skirt and don’t know what to do. There are two important things to take note of: the meeting starts in less than five minutes so there is not a chance for her to fix it, but it’s an extremely important meeting where that kind of thing could be noticed negatively. You have two options that follow a rule of etiquette here- you can either not say anything to her due to the fact that it could stress her out throughout the interview, or you could give her something to cover it up with or slightly fix it when you tell her about it. It may seem rude to not bring it to her attention, but imagine if you were about to go have an important meeting and someone tells you of a stain that you cannot do anything about. You’d be concerned and thinking about it the whole time rather than the subject at hand, which will only make matters worse. However, if you have a jacket or wipe or something that could cover it up or at least slightly diminish its appearance, then you could tell her and attempt to help her tothe best of your ability. It is such a small thing, but it could really be a key factor in making her feel more comfortable and like she’s not alone.
Overall, most people have enough common sense to not gawk at or talk about things someone can’t change about themselves, but it is more difficult at times to tell when something that is not as big of a deal should be brought to people’s attention or not. The five-minute tip is a great indicator to help you remember whether or not you are helping or harming, so integrating it into your daily thought process is a positive thing to help empower women’s relationships with one another.