What is Respect?

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Mind Fuel Daily
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Respect means different things to different people. For some, respect is reserved for authority: it’s how we show honor to those in charge. For others, respect is more about tolerance and a basic regard for others.

Here are six thoughtful perspectives on what it means to be respectful.

1. “The truest form of love is how you behave toward someone, not how you feel about them.” ―Steve Hall
If love is defined by respect, then we show true respect through our actions rather than our feelings or intentions.

2. “I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university.” ―Albert Einstein
Respect amounts to simple decency and courtesy, and that is something we all deserve regardless of rank.

3. “Respect yourself and others will respect you.” ―Confucius
Having respect for ourselves indicates to others how we wish to be treated.

4. “I’m not concerned with your liking or disliking me… All I ask is that you respect me as a human being.” –Jackie Robinson
We cannot pick and choose who we respect based on personal bias or likeability. True respect goes beyond popularity and superficial traits.

5. “Respect is a two-way street, if you want to get it, you’ve got to give it.” –R.G. Risch
Respect is a mutual exchange between two individuals. When one person stops giving, the dynamic is no longer balanced.

6. “If you have some respect for people as they are, you can be more effective in helping them to become better than they are.” –John W. Gardner
Respect is acknowledging a person’s inherent worth and dignity. When we do that, they’ll feel encouraged to fulfill their potential.

No matter how you view it, respect comes down to how we treat other individuals. When we respect someone we listen to them, take them seriously, and give them space to express themselves. Think of the people in your life. Are you showing them the basic respect they deserve?


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