Earning respect

It is hard to respect others when they don’t respect you. I’ve heard it said, respect is something earned, it’s not a given.

We’re often taught by our parents from an early age to respect others, but others need to respect us too. Respect is based on a mutual understanding of people’s values and practices within the framework of culture.

Being informed about another person’s culture, allows us to be respectful. It is important to know about other people’s practices, to understand why their practices and values are so important to them and why we need to respect their practices, faith and beliefs.

It is particularly difficult in families and communities, where those who practice their faiths aren’t tolerate of those who don’t. Society has become diverse and we have become more divided on faith, but we should continue to show tolerance.

Tolerance allows us to ignore the values and practices of others, but allows us to live alongside them, even if we choose not to practise those values for ourselves. We should respect other people, their culture and beliefs.


18 Apr, 2012

8 thoughts on “Earning respect

  1. It’s always a very hard thing to earn someone’s respect if they don’t show you the same courtesy.

    I grew up in a world where my parents expected us to respect them, but they treated us very badly at times and we had to just accept it.

    This has made it very hard for me to respect others without a major effort on their part. I’m trying to learn how to change that, but it has taken quite a bit of time for this to improve.

    I’m hoping that things will change in the very near future.

    1. I totally agree with you one hundred per cent. I believe you’re right, although from my experience culture does get in the way and shouldn’t.

  2. I think both you and Bill are right. Respect shouldn’t depend on culture… but unfortunately it often does.

    Certain cultures are very biased towards males and women are often second class citizens never receiving the respect they are due.

    Respect is earned and should depend on being a good person.

    1. I agree. I have seen first hand, how culture plays its part.

      I believe there is no harm anyone holding on to their beliefs, but those beliefs should incorporate how we treat and respect other people. The problem is that religion and its traditions don’t change and never will… they are slightly antiquated.

      We have to change the way we perceive our cultures, so that we incorporate other values too; respect being one of them. Women are treated differently within the different cultures and that needs to change.

  3. My daughters ex-boyfriend won’t give anybody respect because no one will respect him; but I feel you have to earn respect and should give respect first before knowing if that person deserves respect. He was a rude person and did things that didn’t earn respect.

    I grew up taught that I should respect people. I don’t feel I got any respect when I was growing up. My feelings definitely weren’t respected.

    1. I agree that we have to earn the respect as others have to earn respect too.

      Like you I also was taught to respect other people, but to me it’s a two way street. When we are respectful of others usually others are respectful back.

      You and I are around the same age Lisa. Back then when we were growing up our feelings definitely weren’t respected. That much I know to be true.

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