How to Gain the Respect of Others

Part 2 of 2

As a young person, it can be frustrating when you’re expected to give respect and yet you don’t always receive that same respect in return. That type of frustration is very understandable. But, there are several reasons why this is so often the case.

First and foremost, although it’s unfair, the very fact that you’re young plays a part in this equation. It’s wrong, but others, including many adults, don’t show the respect they should to teenagers. This is no fault of your own, but try to understand that – generally speaking – the older you get, the more respect you’ll receive. You have plenty of time to earn that respect.

For example, we tend to respect those who’ve accomplished significant or important things in their lives; such as good grades, participation in community activities, doing something special at church or in an interest group and playing sports well. These – along with dozens of other potential accomplishments – can put more points in your respect bucket. Obviously, the older you become, the more opportunities you’re going to have to accomplish such things. These are small but important steps toward reaching some of the major goals you may have for your life. So, relax, start working on these accomplishments now, and your time will come. 

To help, there are actions you can start taking to gain respect from others:

  • Show Respect for Those Around You… Respect is a two-way street. In order to gain respect, you have to be a giver of respect as well. As we discussed in How to Respect Yourself and Others – there’s a basic level of respect that we should show for everyone, regardless of the circumstances. Make sure that you hand out respect as you go around your school or your community.
  • Show that You Can Make Good Choices… Take the initiative to handle your schoolwork, chores around your house and job responsibilities seriously. Do the responsible thing without having to be told or reminded to do so every time. Your attitude and behavior are two important factors in whether other people will respect you or not. 
  •  Speak Up for What is Right… For the most part, by the time we’re in our early teens we know right from wrong on many levels. To gain respect, not only should you always do what’s right – irrespective of the consequences – but you should speak up for what is right.
  • Show that You Believe Your Life is Important… Act with the utmost respect toward yourself. Your study habits, what you do with your spare time, what outside interests you have and many similar factors reveal what you think about yourself. As people observe your attitude and behavior, these observations will go a long way toward you gaining their respect…respect that you hopefully deserve.

Respect Creates Harmony

If we would all attain the appropriate level of self-respect, have and show respect for all others, and live so others will respect us, the world would be a harmonious place to live. There would be no hatred, no violence and no wars. Indeed, we would live in a world of peace.

Respect is a very powerful ingredient in how people – even total strangers – treat each other. If we could spread enough of it around, acts of respect could, in fact, change the world.

But obviously, human beings have inhabited this planet for many, many years and we have not gotten there yet.  However, let’s not give up hope. If each of us did our own respectful part, this peaceful condition could become a reality.

Maybe it could even begin with you. Why not try to start your own respect revolution by showing you respect yourself, and you respect others. What if, beginning with you, people started to make a pledge to respect each other as human beings first, and then to respect other people’s genuine beliefs, views and opinions?  What if you got out in front and lead us all on this important road of respect.

Are you willing to give it a try?

“Not armies, not nations, have advanced the race; 
but here and there, in the course of the ages, 
an individual has stood up and cast his shadow over the world.”
Edwin D. Chapin

Written by Shawn Jackson


Part 1
How to Respect Yourself and Others

Copyright 2014 / Good Choices Good Life, Inc. / All Rights Reserved

“At some point you have to realize that you have to earn the right to be respected. It is not given without reason. It is earned.”