Respect – a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.
Who, in your life, do you have the utmost respect for? What are the qualities that you respect them for? What is it that you admire most about them?
Now, what do you admire most about you?
Self respect is one of the most important factors that comes in to loving yourself for who you are. Without respect love cannot exist, care cannot exist. Having respect for those around us can seem to be a lot easier than respecting ourselves. Why is this?
Often times we find qualities in others that we wish we could have. We admire these qualities, but hate them because we do not poses them. This vicious cycle leads you down the path to not loving or respecting yourself.
Let’s start with getting this out on the table. Everyone is different. No one person is identical to the next.
Using the example of identical twins – when you look at them you see the same person. BUT when you get to know them individually they’re very much different from each other. Yes, they may have the same interests but when it comes down to their personalities and the qualities they posses as an individual – completely different.
Knowing this, why do we compare our qualities to those we have the most respect for? It’s simple we wish to be like them. We want others to respect us as much as we do them.
It’s Good To Be Different
Going back to the identical twins. They’re identical in looks but different in personality and qualities. Knowing this we still respect and love them both for who they are, not as a pair.
People respect people for who they are – not for who they’re trying to be.
We are unique to ourselves and we need to feed off that to grow. Grow into who you are deep down. Looking at your own individual qualities – what do you admire? Better yet, ask around and have others tell you what they admire about you. Feed off of this.
Acts of Self Respect
Once you have the qualities nailed down that you admire about yourself it’s time to act upon them. Doing so through various acts of self respect will solidify the respect and love you have for yourself. These acts will not only help you love yourself for who you are – they’ll help you become a healthier person as well.
Forgive Your Mistakes
Everyone makes mistakes in one way or another. It’s a part of life. However the most important part of life is being able to forgive your mistakes. Letting go.
You cannot truly respect yourself if you’re dwelling on the past. Holding on to a mistake you’ve made, no matter how small, prevents you from growing into who you are. It keeps you in the past.
Learning to let go and forgive yourself is the only way to move forward. Let the past be in the past – don’t bring it into your future.
Be Honest With Yourself and Others
Being honest is the purest form of respect. Those who respect others, don’t lie to others. When being honest with yourself you’ll be less likely to compromise on the things that matter most to you.
This is probably the hardest thing to do when it comes down to self respect as we don’t necessarily realize that we’re not being honest with ourselves. Pay close attention to what you tell yourself you believe in and be willing to get down to the nitty gritty of true honesty.
Take Care of Your Body
Respecting your body enough to take good care of it not only will reflect physically but mentally as well. Ever hear the phrase “look good, feel good”? This applies here.
By giving your body the love it needs through food, exercise, sleep, and so much more gives you the physical results you desire. BUT did you know that it can help provide you with the mental results you didn’t know you were missing? Taking good care of your physical body will aide you in feeling better about yourself mentally. It can help bring your spirits up as well as make you feel better internally as well.
Speak Positively About Yourself
This act of self-respect is one of the most important. If you can not speak positively of yourself, how can you truly love yourself? One way to build up how you speak of yourself is to practice daily affirmations. In the morning while making your coffee, getting ready for work, driving to a meeting – this can be done anytime, anywhere.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
This one can be tough. Good news is that the more you practice other acts of self respect, the easier it will become. As much as you may admire someone else you truly cannot compare yourself to them. You are not the same person as they are – you go about life differently – and you’re ultimately unique in your own way.
The goal is to worry about you and you only (at first). Work on loving and respecting yourself before transferring this admiration on to others. Don’t compare, but look up to those who you respect. Ask what steps they have taken towards self-love/respect and implement those into your practice as well.
Most importantly be beautifully you.