How much do you respect yourself?
Respect. I see that word flying around in all walks of life. I’ve met friends that continually beat on about getting respect from others, and similarly meeting people that complain that they don’t get enough respect from people. They only wished that others would listen to them more. And it’s the same with all walks of life. Sex, respect, love, kindness, humility and an array of other things. The more you see people talking outwardly about a particular issue are usually the people that lack that very same issue the most.
“What you receive from life is an inward reflection on how you treat yourself”
Sound strange? Well, it’s simple really. To learn to love fully you need to know how to properly love yourself. And similarly to receive respect from others you need to know how to properly respect yourself. To have others randomly gift you things because they “want to” you need to know how to be giving to yourself. You see the trend here? However you treat yourself is how the world is going to cast it’s shadowy eyes on you. If life is positive then I expect you’ve learned to give yourself positive attention. And if life treats you like shite then I’d probably say be a bit more kind to yourself.
I’m not talking about the situations that are out of your control. Life has a habit of throwing curveballs at you. We were on the brink of bankruptcy at one point, and that was completely outwith our control. Yet, it was how we dealt with the situation that pulled us through it together. Our positive outlook enabled us to deal with our problems head on and efficiently, rather than if we buried our heads in the sand.
I learned an absolute ton from managing a group of volunteers. It was very rewarding in the sense that my only position with them was to enable them to grow. And as they grew I grew with them. It became quite apparent to me that everything in life is a “trickle down effect” and by that, I mean “leading by example”. It always amazed me the effects my emotions and actions had on the people I was with at the time. If I was having a bad day the morale in the computer room would be similarly spicy. If it was a good day everyone would be happy, jovial and having fun. And that led me on to really considering the effect everything I do has on other people or groups of people. And the role that I play in those groups. It also caused me to inwardly reflect upon myself and the effects that my behaviour has on me as a person.
I eventually came to the conclusion (from a lot of intense introspection) that everything in life has a consequence. From the slightest positive change in mood to the angriest hissy fit one can throw. It determines the way in which we interact with one another and it will also determine whether our interaction is a positive encounter or a negative encounter. And once you manage to navigate conversations into positive encounters then you will start to feel so much better about yourself. I’ll give you an example.
I took Alex to school yesterday, and on the way, I had an angry altercation between myself and a woman over who had the right of way in our cars. It ended up with us getting angry with each other and driving off. That afternoon when I was picking up Alex I ran into her on foot. I could tell she was gearing up for an argument, but before she spoke I apologised. I told her that it was a breakdown in communication and perhaps I should have given way to her. The result? A positive encounter. What would the point be in arguing with her? Tell me. To best her? To be angry? I always think positive encounters are far better than negative ones because then that way life is easier. And, just so we’re clear. You need to work at making life easier. You can’t just relax and think it will be easy. A little work is required.
So the next time you complain about no-one listening to you, stop. Stop and listen to other people a little more. And, listen to yourself. The next time you crave respect; show others the same gratitude. Allow them their opinions, don’t tell them what to do. Be there. Be a comforting shadow enveloping them when they need it. And, show yourself the same grace. I always chuckle when I see Facebook statuses. I occasionally see the odd status where someone bashes on about life being hard, but those are the same people that will, right after making that status will walk out of their house and start an argument with fresh air.
Ever heard the phrase “Life is what you make it?” that’s exactly it. Life is tough, yes. But you can make it easier for yourself, or harder. It’s up to you. Give yourself a little more respect. Allow yourself to make mistakes and learn from them. Allow yourself to be human 🙂