Yesterday, my kid just ask me “What does it mean to respect someone, Mommy?”
I was taken aback at first because she is 3.5 years old. But thank goodness, she asked a nice question to answer.
“Respect means you treat someone kindly, listen to them with your heart, and acknowledge their opinions and feelings no matter you agree or disagree with them.
Make it simpler, Ted (her brother) dislikes your favorite cartoon and wants to change the channel. That time, if you truly respect him, do not throw a temper tantrum or scream. Listen to his opinion and persuade him with your opinion.
You got it?”
Now that I reflect on the case, I am still not sure whether I understand “what does it mean to respect someone?” properly. However, I still think this is quite an interesting topic because respect is so important that not only kids but all of us should learn to be respectful to ourselves and others.
What Is Respect?
I’m proud to say that I always try to show fulsomeness for people around and also teach my kids to do so. However, come to think of the definition, I am not 100% sure. Thus, I do a search in the dictionary.
From the Cambridge dictionary, “respect is admiration felt or shown for someone or something that you believe has good ideas or qualities. It is also the politeness, honor, and care shown towards someone or something that is considered important.”
This definition is true, yet I believe that respect can go far deeper than that, and it can be shown in different ways based on the people or situations you are get involved in.
What Does It Mean to Respect Someone?
Let’s say about how my parents used to teach me to show admiration and honor to people.
Honor your elders
I know some Asian friends who were taught to always show the utmost respect for family members, especially the elders. It’s become a good culture for centuries. Though I am in the U.S, where people encourage to focus on themselves and their esteem more, I was still required to show fulsomeness for the elderly, even strangers.
The reasons are they live longer than you and they definitely possess a lifetime of knowledge and experience, meaning we can always learn useful things from them. They might think and act differently because, like us, they have own lifestyles. If you want them to respect your values, you must also pay attention to their own values.
I truly respect my Grandparents and parents. When I feel down and see no light ahead, I get some advice from my beloved family. It is as if the elderly can walk a mile in my shoes and I am able to learn from their stories: how they got through the tough time, how they learn to let go of resentment in life and in marriage. or how they share to be shared.
Be respectful for yourself
My next lesson about respect is self-respect.
My Mom said respect for someone did not mean I had to please others all the time to make them happy or I had to agree with their opinions even they are against my belief. Showing your gratefulness is to thoughtfully listen to others while still standing up for my esteem politely and persuasively.
Self-respect is extremely important in a relationship, especially in marriage. Do not let anyone, even the family members, ake you for granted or treat you ass a doormat. Instead, know your personal traits and how much you are worth.
Vital as it is, however, you do not mistake the self-respect for ego and selfishness.
Be mindful with your partner
Truly told, every unrespectful relationship will end up into flame because one side gives too much and the other side is so reckless. For me, respect in marriage teaches me how to be patient, thoughtful, and sympathetic.
To show respect to your partner means demonstrating trust, reliability, and accountability. My husband and I agree to not text or call each other too much frequently when we are away from home. One or two calls a day are enough to know everything is alright. Moreover, we do not go through phones or personal things without permission.
What’s more, respect is to be mindful of what you are communicating to each other, both verbally and non-verbally.
Communication is one of the most important parts of a relationship, and one of the hardest. That’s because being open and honest with your partner means being open and honest with yourself. For example, a simple “Thank You” for the meal will relieve all my tiredness. Or when I am upset, I try not to shout at my spouse and require him to be a mind reader. I talk openly about my problems and ask him for help, if possible.
Show gracefulness with your kids
The act is better than saying.
If you want to teach your kids about “what does it mean to respect someone?”, you should first respect them.
First off, you should let the children make a choice about their hobbies, for example, what they desire to wear. Secondly, be in good manners when you interact with kids. Respect the elderly. Respond to their mistakes with grace. Do not get upset suddenly or get quarrels in front of your kids, etc. Moreover, you should respect their privacy and do not force them to share if they do not want.
Respect your friends and colleagues
Be friends – be honest and properly respectful for them. Respect can be shown in small things such as listening carefully when they speak to you, understanding and appreciating their differences, as well as avoiding abusive words.
For colleagues, you do not need to be friends with them all. However, always show your respect so that you can receive their respect. For example, considering their opinions whether you agree with them or not. Or, if your co-workers require to change anything that makes them annoyed, you should try your best to avoid doing so or at least, explaining to them why you need to do so.
Finally, Respect Is What You Earn
Knowing what does it mean to respect someone is necessary to show your fulsomeness the right way. Always remember that respect is what you earn rather than taking it for granted. Hilariously, it stays for life and enhances healthy relationships.
To sum up, communication skills are important to express your respect. So be mindful whenever you can. Said like Albert Einstein “I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university.”