You Must Respect To Expect Respect

Respect for ourselves guides our morals; respect for others guides our manners. ~Laurence Sterne

Respect is an attitude. Respectful people are honest, considerate, responsible, polite, and tolerant. It is treating others with courtesy and dignity. Being respectful is having regards for others feelings. Respect is necessary for healthy relationships. One must be respectful of others in order to be respected. The golden rule applies here. “Do unto others as you would others do unto you.”

Respect is the cornerstone of integrity. It should be taught at home while children are young. They should be taught to respect not only themselves but their parents, siblings, other relatives, and friends. They should be sent to school with the view of respecting their teachers, people of authority, and their friends.

A lack of respect results in disgrace and hostility, so therefore; I feel respect should be given freely rather than earned. However, I think it should be taken away if someone doesn’t reciprocate respect or doesn’t measure up to the worthiness of being respected.

Knowledge will give you power, but character respect. ~Bruce Lee

I was raised to be a person of good moral value. I have always respected and trusted those I thought to be of good character. I don’t respect people because of their political power or celebrity status. Money or fame does not make someone deserving of respect. It is a matter of personal integrity. I will not hold them in high esteem because of those two things. If I were to meet them, I would be kind and expect to be treated the same. If they treated me in the same manner, I would feel they were deserving of respect.

I try to treat all people the same. I am respectful of all that I meet, and most are respectful in turn. There have been very few people I have met that I have immediately felt disrespected by and turned off. These have been people who are self-absorbed, think the world revolves around them, and expect everyone to do for them. I don’t mesh with that type. I don’t care how intelligent someone might be, if she/he has no respect for others I consider the intellect somewhat of a waste. I’d rather associate with a considerate person of lesser intelligence than a hateful scholar

Without feelings of respect, what is there to distinguish men from beasts? ~Confucius

Society has recently thinned the line between political correctness and respect. People are afraid to tell jokes because someone somewhere is going to be offended…even though no one in particular is the target. It is the fact that it could possibly be about them because they “might” fit that profile. I am not speaking of smearing someone’s reputation. I am referring to innocent remarks people make on occasion.

Recently, I have noticed a total lack of respect in areas where people are claiming to be so open minded. The problem is that they are only respectful if your opinion is one that agrees with theirs. These same people take offense every time someone else makes a joke that has absolutely nothing to do with them. Yet, they can say anything they want and it’s ok for them to make jokes at their intended targets and no one is supposed to be offended. I think respect should definitely be a two-way street.

I think if we love ourselves and open ourselves to loving others and we are honest, courteous and understanding, we are living respectfully.

When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you. ~Lao Tzu

This is my Spin on “Respect” for Sprite’s Keeper.

31 thoughts on “You Must Respect To Expect Respect

    • I really had a hard time writing about that topic. Respect isn’t taught these days the same as it used to be, and I really didn’t want to get into all of that.

      • I know what you mean! I had the same trouble writing a comment that didn’t get too far into defining it! But yes, it really isn’t taught the same way as it once was (I’m talking only a decade’s gap between my age and some of my students and it really is apparent) and certainly between cultures, things as simple as hand gestures or body posture can convey completely different messages. Words? Equally if not more complex!

  1. I like how you touched on people being afraid to make jokes at the expense of others or being politically correct in case they offend “someone”. I always wondered if that was respect or just fear. Great Spin, Suzicate!
    You’re linked!

  2. First, I love the photo you chose for this post topic. It’s perfect!

    There’s so much in your words here that I could echo, because I totally agree with you.

    ” I feel respect should be given freely rather than earned. However, I think it should be taken away if someone doesn’t reciprocate respect or doesn’t measure up to the worthiness of being respected.”


    Thanks, Suzi!


  3. I’m not sure Political Correctness and Respect have much in common. Respect is respect is respect – you treat someone with it or you don’t. Political Correctness – what is today may not be tomorrow. As a culture, we seem to have lost a sense of respect for authority and responsibility for our actions.

    • I am referring to a specific incident that I did not cite and it has everything to do with it. I do not feel that “being politically correct” (probably as Jen stated a matter of fear) is a matter of respect, however when those that complain of people not being politically correct but do the same things in other areas, I call that disrespectful – I don’t think people have the right to complain about others when they are doing the very same thing.

  4. Yeah, respect isn’t taught . . . .much. I don’t see it much. Sadly, when I do, I am so shocked. Sad, but true.

    I laughed when I read the portion about people with “open minds” “only respectful if your opinion is one that agrees with theirs”. This is something I see more and more. Amazing.

    Difficult to write about something when you don’t see it much.

  5. I so agree with you. i think most of us treat others with respect when we first meet or for a while, then some of that lose them and others dont.

    every one loves to be respected but they forget that it has to be earned and returned.

  6. This was an excellent post Suzi- “These have been people who are self-absorbed, think the world revolves around them, and expect everyone to do for them.” This kind of people really drive me crazy! Money, intelligence, a high education or anything else for that matter, can not be the reasons to treat people disrespectfully!

  7. You make very very good points. I agree especially about respect being taught to children when they’re young. Not “discipline,” mind you, but respect. There’s a definite difference there. If children are respected by their own parents as people with thoughts and needs and wants and wishes of their own, then they will also, in turn, learn to respect others.

  8. I do think respect should be given, but also–in order to keep it–earned. Just like you said.

    Let me tell you, as a girl who spent her first summer job working the counter at a gas station, you sure learn a lot about people by the way they treat service-industry workers!

  9. Respect is a difficult topic. I agree you should teach your children to always be respectful and mindful of other people, their feelings, their property etc. But beyond that I have to say I really do believe that true respect for a person is something that has to be earned and not simply demanded or expected. So teaching our children how to earn respect is what I think counts. Great thought provoking post.

  10. I think you hit the nail on the head with this one. I’m dealing with this issue at work right now, and it’s hard to have respect for someone who tries to bully me into getting their way, even when they know I don’t have a say in the decisions. Fortunately, this person will only be around for a day or two.

  11. I totally agree with your take on respect. Like you, I was raised to be respectful of others. My Grannie Viar always touted the “Golden Rule.” I am amazed daily by the lack of respect people have for themselves as evidenced by the things they say and do. Respect definitely is a two way street. There are those who have no concept of its meaning or priviledges.Thanks!

  12. I think respect is the foundation of any good relationship which is why I am no longer married. Respect is something to be earned, sadly too many don’t think that way.

  13. I agree. And respect should be given across the age lines. This is why I think my brother and I get along with children so well- we both respect them as people.
    I do sometimes make judgements across the board, like I shouldn’t- yesterday’s post is an example of that. I was not saying I disrespect all those women with boob jobs, I was saying that I think it’s sad society pushes that. Or corsets way back when-
    and in answer to your comment. I really hate when people use the term “jealous” more often than not jealousy isn’t even involved. dumb stuck up so and sos

  14. This is an excellent post my friend. I agree wholehearted with you. I am no longer going to be blogging. I have dcided to take my free time and write my 4th book. I want you to know it has been a pleasure and honor to know you. You will be in my prayers, and I wish you all the best in your writing. I know you will always use your awesome talent well.

    Love Vi

  15. I think we were both raised with the same views on respect and earning it. I like the party about having money and power or fame not making you respect people, I feel the same way. They’re just PEOPLE, same as the rest of us.

  16. I totally agree with you. The generations that believe in respect, who respect others and themselves, are slowly disappearing. Now, we have a generation of entitled, self-absorbed brats growing into adults who have absolutely no respect for anyone or anything. It’s so sad that parents seem to no longer be teaching their kids about respect.

  17. Wow you did a great job with this subject! I flaked on it!
    Sorry I’m so late getting here, I’ve been having some slight computer issues, like getting my butt to sit in front of it!

    I agree that parents have seem to lost touch with teaching the next generation respect and good values and tolorance.
    Great post!

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