These are three rules that you must follow if you want to demand total respect. 

Respect is reciprocal: if you show respect towards others, others will also show respect towards you. Simply forget it, and, well… that’s not the case, is it? That awkward moment when you realize you respect everyone but still treated like crap. We’ve all been there. So how on Earth can you really demand total respect from your subordinates? Short answer: respect yourself.



How To Gain Respect 101

It seems certain people in life are naturally born to command respect whatever the situation. And this is not because of how they look, nor their ability to make threats for people to respect them back. And neither is it because of their accolades, nor some higher level of power vested in them. It’s simply who they are. So what’s the magic spell for being respectable?

According to Amy Alkon, the author of ‘Unf*ckology: A Field Guide To Living With Guts And Confidence,’ she has identified the science of respect by following three simple-yet-not-easy things that will influence respect from others. She advised that being respected by others is a feeling everyone deserves, especially if you’re an entrepreneur or having a managerial position, then learning these rules are really important to the success of your business or organization. Here are her three secrets to getting the respect you deserve.



#1. Embrace Self-Acceptance

First of all, who are you? That seems like an easy question, and it also seems like you’re the only person who can definitely answer it, huh? Alkon advice that you accept yourself for exactly who you are, but it seems there’s so much about yourself you want to change and improve. Of course, but as she explains, if you start by embracing yourself just as you are, you’ll be in a better position to make whatever changes in your life later on.

Self-acceptance leads to self-confidence. And the old adage: “if you don’t respect yourself, no one will respect you, too,” seems true, after all.

Image: Shutterstock / iStock / Getty Images Plus

As Alkon writes, “You simply decide to do this, to accept the whole of you, simply because you exist.”

This might even go against your gut intuition, if you often curse yourself for not doing much to improve yourself, and she says its alright. Strive towards accepting yourself and it’ll deeply influence the way people see you and respond to you. You’ll never be the same person again.



#2. Be Kind To Yourself

This is all about treating yourself with enough compassion as much as you’d do for others. Never subject yourself to so much self-guilt and constant criticism like you’re simply the worse thing ever. As Alkon points out, our failures and imperfections are what make us human and connect us to the rest of the human race. Sounds pessimistic, but if you’re a leader with a lack of compassion for yourself, its more likely you’ll show less compassion towards your subordinates as well.

Image: Shutterstock / iStock / Getty Images Plus

As Alkon writes, “All humans are fallible, and if you are human, wave to the rest of us screwups!”

Furthermore, being kind to yourself lets you act with empathy, being able to identify your own weaknesses and imperfections, lets others feel comfortable that you’ll be better equipped to handle theirs, too.



#3. Be Self-Assertive

Last and not least, assert yourself, and can easily be a delicate balance. But being assertive simply means speaking up for yourself. This involves standing up for what you want, or are entitled to, for your opinion and ideas, but you do so without being angry, strident, or egotistic. All of which can be a signal of a lack of confidence and empathy. This is what Alkon calls “healthy self-assertiveness.”

And, if you can do that  — give assertion without your biases — not only will you find yourself, but also find that unalienable authority needed to finally influence the respect you deserve. Just treat yourself with enough self-respect and -compassion, and you’ll realize that’s the secret spell to commanding respect.


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Written by: Nana Kwadwo, Fri, Jan 07, 2022.

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