Enforcing respect from other people will not work if you do not first have a clear idea of what respect is. It is much easier to understand what this value means if we are able to recognize the behaviors in which it is manifested. In this regard , we respect someone if we see him as an equal and if we accept him as he is.
This means that any behavior aimed at underestimating or undervaluing others shows a lack of respect. Just like any action aimed at rejecting, denying, or nullifying what another feels or thinks. You may not agree with this. But devaluing or wanting to change the feelings and thoughts of others is really going too far.
Enforcing respect from others will not work if you do not respect yourself first. This means that you should see yourself as equal to others, of equal value. In other words, never feel more or less worthy than anyone else. And of course accept yourself too. Feel that you are worthy just the way you are.
How do you command respect from others?
The acceptance and appreciation of yourself is reflected in your attitude and actions. It’s not an abstract reality, and you don’t have to say it out loud to let others know how you feel. Someone who respects himself has three important qualities: self-esteem, assertiveness and authenticity.
- Self-esteem , simply put, involves having a good opinion of yourself. It has very little to do with narcissism. It ‘s just about liking yourself . That you feel sympathy for what you think, say and do. Without, of course, thinking that it makes you better than anyone else. You should feel as special just as you are and as equal as everyone else is.
- Assertiveness, in turn, has to do with being able to defend your rights and express your opinion. It is especially important when you find yourself in an unfavorable situation, where you think differently from the majority of the people around you. Different even than the current authority figure. This quality is a direct consequence of self-esteem and a necessary condition to command respect from others.
- Finally , authenticity refers to our tendency to retain our essence, values, and beliefs, even though it may not be the most selfish thing for ourselves to do in a given situation. This means expressing what you think and feel, regardless of the context. Don’t fake it to appear a certain way to others. Be spontaneous. Keep in mind that you can only be authentic if you are aware of the value you have as a person.
Enforcing respect from others
Respect starts at home. Therefore, you will never be able to command respect from others if you do not first respect yourself. Understand that respect is not the same as fear or reverence. Instead, it implies acceptance and appreciation.
Here are some keys to commanding respect from others:
- Accept that you cannot be liked by everyone. The approval or disapproval of others need not shape you. There will always be people who will not like you.
- Learn to distinguish kindness from condescension. Courtesy is not the same as submission. We are not here to make others feel good.
- Strengthen and practice self-love. Never stop recognizing your values and achievements. Never make your achievements insignificant, no matter how small they seem.
- Include the word “no” in your dictionary. Setting boundaries does not mean insulting others or being inconsiderate. It’s just a healthy way to maintain mutual respect.
- Accept that you are not responsible for what others feel or think. If the way you think, talk, or act bothers or upsets them, that’s not your problem. Let that person be the one who resolves their own discomfort.
- Demand recognition if necessary. If you do too much for others, they will eventually stop appreciating it. In this case, stop your collaboration for a while.
- Learn to defend yourself. Perhaps you are a victim of ‘learned helplessness’. Then now is the time for you to overcome this and learn to defend yourself. In the beginning this is not easy. But once you make it a habit, it’s not hard to stick with it.
To command respect from others is not something you can achieve overnight. Especially not if you’ve treated yourself disrespectfully countless times before. You need to make a firm decision to make this happen and have a strong will to maintain this focus. It’s worth it though. Disrespect will only lead to greater evils and much unnecessary suffering.