Have you ever been in a situation where someone questions your beliefs, passion and dreams? Imagine yourself in a world full of judgements. Every time you try to speak and interact, the reciprocal action of the people around you is hate. What would it feel if you are doing your very best yet no one understands and appreciates your efforts? Are judgements making you a better person or do judgements end up depressing you? Do you feel respected when people are judging your every move and action without them knowing your real struggle, without them knowing the real you?
Respect is a two syllable word with an endless and broad meaning. It is the equivalent of zero judgements and zero discrimination. Respecting someone means listening to them and accepting their different views on life. It is something that you give to people willingly without any hesitation. Everybody deserves respect no matter what the color of their skin, no matter what their gender is, and no matter what their beliefs are.
Respect starts from oneself. You will never gain respect from other people if you will not respect yourself. We should show them that we are deserving of the respect that we demand. The world now is so diverse that people have discovered new ways of expressing themselves; however, it is an undeniable fact that people still end up misunderstanding us, no matter how much we try to express ourselves in a clear manner.
We tend to judge things we could not understand or fear. It became our natural behavior and reaction towards things. When a new ideal arises, some will react to it negatively and some will embrace it. Those who embraced the new ideal will be judged by those who oppose. That is when the lack of respect comes in. When disagreement comes in the way of two people they tend to lose respect towards each other. When two different ideas collide, two people fight and then respect is lost totally.
Disrespect also roots from inferiority. I say this in the perspective of feeling superior and feeling inferior. Disrespect is affliction of defamatory or discriminative insults towards someone else due to the other having a superior position. Another form of disrespect is disrespect of oneself due to the lack of ability of one to achieve their goals. These two types of disrespect are so common in today’s world, especially for those belonging in the business industry or between employees, competing against each other for a promotion.
Gathering respect is no easy task though. And a lot can attest to that they underwent so many harsh events in their lives where they wanted to give up but at the end of all those grueling task, they managed to step their game up and be the best that they can be that they ended up earning recognition and respect from everyone.
In other words, in order to respect and be respected we should always open our minds to the possibility of change. We need to be empathetic and sympathetic at the same time. Before judging a person we should always think of their struggles and how hard they try to overcome those. Let us put ourselves in each other’s shoes and feel each other’s forceful effort to win in life’s everyday challenges. Let us offer each other the respect we all deserve. As a human being, that’s the very least we can give to someone.
One of the best ways to show respect for someone is to truly listen to another’s point of view. Obviously, we’ll not always agree with one another on every topic (and you should never adopt a point of view with which you do not agree), but we should allow each other to have and express our own views – regardless of whether we agree with them or not.
“To be one, to be united is a great thing. But to respect the right to be different is maybe even greater.”
Keep this in mind: you owe everyone a basic level of respect for being a fellow human being, but your level of respect for others will vary from person to person. Just like your self-respect will grow as you master the ideals discussed above, your level of respect for others will vary depending upon your view of them and their own self-respect.
There’s nothing wrong with affording some people greater respect than others. You should be kind and polite to everyone – no question about that. But for obvious reasons, some of us simply deserve more respect than others. For example, I think we would all agree that a consistently honest person deserves more respect than a habitual liar. So, always be kind, polite and afford a basic level of respect for your fellow man, but you shouldn’t afford beyond basic respect to those who aren’t working on ideals you believe to be important.
Respect is one of mankind’s most noble sentiments. The highest levels of respect are always earned – never given. This is true of self-respect as well as respect for others. Before granting the highest level of self-respect or respect for others, make sure the person is worthy of the honor.
“Respect for ourselves guides our morals;
respect for others guides our manners.”
Written by Shawn Jackson
- OTHER PART IN THIS SERIES -
How to Gain the Respect of Others
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