Respect is a form of recognition and basic human right that we give, earn, and practice every day.
From Dictionary.com, respect is defined as “esteem for or a sense of the worth or excellence of a person, a personal quality or ability, or something considered as a manifestation of a personal quality or ability”.
In short, respect is given as we honor another person in terms of his or her wisdom or achievements, even if we do not approve of everything that she does. This is a prominent aspect that we should have given attention to as the reason laying behind the word “respect”-How we earn it and how we practice it.
Respect allows us to learn to accept another person for who they are without trying to force them to behave or act according to our expectations.
It is about allowing them to break through the stereotypes and open up a new prospect for us, that human being is diverse and unique in their own way. It is the differences between us that creates our own aura and personality, and we are all equally important and play our part in society.
As a human being, it is a prerequisite for us to feel safe, that no judgment, humiliation, and discrimination against us before we feel valued and important.
In addition, the need to be seen as important is a timeless and fundamental component that everyone demands and respects regardless of the color of our skin, religion, nations, groups, or personality. Respect is the key to help us to express and perceive that importance.
1. The Golden Rule: Treat Others How You Want To Be Treated
The golden rule is actually found as the proverb in many religions and cultures and it all has the same objective, to emphasize the art of mutual reciprocity between people.
It is a simple yet powerful rule. If you want to feel respected, respect other people first and people will surely do the same to you.
For example, apologize to people when you made a mistake, be the safe keeper of your friend’s secret and try to help others if we are capable to do so.
2. Respect Yourself
Respect is always earned, never given. However, it is impossible for us to earn respect from other people if we failed to respect ourselves on the first page.
Therefore, prioritize your needs and emotions starting from now. If you need some privacy, tell your friends and family. If you do not want to change your job, study the course, move to new places or you just do not feel like going out for a movie tonight, tell other people about how you feel and your decision and stand strong with it.
If others see that you respect yourself, they will take your needs as considerations.
Photo Source: Thought Catalog
3. Be Assertive
Assertiveness is the confidence to stand up for yourself while still being respectful to other people. Assertive does not mean you can be arrogant or act in a haughty manner, but you are being yourself in a direct and honest way.
To earn respect from other people, being assertive allow others to hear your voice and not to underestimate you. They have the right not to agree with your words or actions, but they should respect your voice and opinions.
Keep in mind that our approaches or ideas may be different from others, but no one holds the absolute truth and answers.
Photo Source: MARK ADRIANE
4. Be Empathetic and Positive
Do you consider yourself as a positive and empathetic person?
Nobody wants to be surrounded by a person who spread negativity every day that secretly influenced us and allow the negativity spirit to creep into our thoughts unconsciously. Being positive even in the hardest situation helps in earning respect as we always have a bright outlook in the situation and might light up the team’s spirit to continue the journey.
In addition, listening to others and being empathetic is important because if we put ourselves in the shoes of others, we will understand each other more and respect for them is developed naturally.
Take time to interact with others, look more into their everyday life and feelings.
Photo Source: Clay Banks
No solid foundation of interpersonal relationships- friends, family, workplace, nature, can be built with the absence of respect from two sides. Disagreement, dissatisfaction, quarrel, dispute, and conflict can be avoided with respect from the first place.
Thus respect is a simple word yet requires wisdom, appropriate actions, and practice to apply it.
It is a good reminder for us always instill the quality of respect by learning to tolerate, never discriminate, and offend others while still being ourselves.