I've been thinking a good bit about gender-neutral language lately, and I've been making an effort to eliminate unnecessarily gendered language from my day-to-day speech. However, there are a few sticking points for me that I am having a hard time with finding my way around. One of the most difficult for me, having been brought up in the deep south and still living there, are honorifics like "sir" and "ma'am". I use these when addressing pretty much anyone, and it's a habit I'm having a hard time breaking. It's got me thinking about whether there are any good alternatives that would feel respectful of the person I'm addressing while not sticking out too much. If that's not an option (and I suspect it would be asking too much) then what are your ideal alternatives, either neologisms, borrowed from other languages, or just repurposed words that are in current use?
Examples of usage that I would love to replace:
"Yes, sir/No, ma'am"
"Excuse me, sir/ma'am"
"Mr./Mrs./Ms." (I use this less often but still catch myself at times. I also think this one has the best alternative currently in use, with Mx. catching on in some places)
Also, if this question is missing the mark or disrespectful in any way, please let me know. I'm still learning!