R-E-S-P-E-C -T – Find out what it means to me…. I can hear Aretha Franklin belt it out. But how do you get it in the workplace and on production sets today?
Here are 3 thoughts and lessons I’ve learned.
Know and exert your boundaries.
One of the hardest things to learn is when to stop. I still fail at this at times. I’m one who likes to push the boundaries but has learned over the years that sometimes you just need to throw in the towel and give it a rest. It often comes down to our self-worth and wanting to be “enough,” but even more than that, wanting to be exceptional in the eyes of others. In our “me’ social media world of comparing ourselves with others’ endeavors and achievements, this can bite back, overwhelming you with exhaustion.
Not being able to say no can also be an invasion by others of your time and energy that interrupts your ability to achieve all God’s called you to do. Wanting to help and encourage others is admirable but can also be a disruption to what God’s called you to accomplish. In both of these cases, it diminishes respect because it robs us of success. Boundaries inspire others to respect your time and expertise and show others how to manage time and purpose.
Stop trying to be perfect and impress everyone.
You’ll never reach perfection and trying to please everyone. It won’t happen. This took me years to learn because of an older brother who died as a child. I always was trying to replace him in the eyes of my parents, who, because of their loss, unknowingly talked about him and idolized him to me. He was their perfect child who did no wrong when he walked the earth. I was an adult before I realized how their constant remembrances of him had affected me. Don’t try to be perfect or impressive, be real. Be vulnerable and willing to forgive the value of others and accept their imperfections. Admit when you have failed, and then look for opportunities to turn failures into victories. Take the time to look people in the eye as well. Be confident in what you can do, knowing you will never be good at everything. You will gain respect for being real.
It’s amazing to me that I have to talk about this in today’s world, where we can afford to look better for much less. I know torn jeans and, sweats, and hoodies are the go-to choices today, especially after the pandemic, but looking put together, having a style (and I might add smelling clean) will always gain respect. It may seem superficial, but it makes a difference in what people remember about you.
Research says that we size a person up in less than 8 seconds and decide if we want to pay attention to that person. First impressions stick. There is also a reason a fresh haircut or manicure makes you feel good. It affects your attitude, energy, and choices. It reflects what you value and affects how others perceive and value you. Others won’t respect you until you respect yourself.
Respect comes down to knowing who you are and being courageous. Courage isn’t about being fearless. Courage comes with making the right choices. If you want to be a hero – respected, make the right choices. Then become that person who stands out and is looked up to by others. It’s worth more than gold, and it’s what God is cheering you on to become. He wants us to be a reflective image of Himself – mind – spirit, and bodily. When you are respected, it reflects the One who lives in you. It’s a reflection of God living in you.