Give respect to gain respect

(kiran javed hussain, karachi)

I believe that respect is one of the most important things in the whole world because it is one of the morals I have to follow because if I want respect I need to give respect. That’s what my teachers and parents have taught me to do if I ever want to be someone in this world. Everything is obtained from respect, such as, personality, education, and profession. By respecting others, I am showing how my family raised me and how I am representing myself.

Each one of us wants to be respected in our lives. Nobody loves to get humiliated. When others criticise us or speak behind our backs, and if we get affected or react to them in any way, it would mean that our self esteem is very fragile and based on a weak foundation.

We base our self esteem on the opinions of others, but what we forget is that every person will have a different opinion about us and we can never really know what others are thinking, because we’re not connected to their minds. Even if we do know what others are thinking, aren’t they entitled to have their opinion? Why should we allow their opinion to shake our self esteem and lose our inner stability? Stop worrying about what others think of you. Once you know who you are and your true self, you need not depend on the opinion of others.

Self esteem and self respect are intimately linked. One is not possible without the other. All of us have been taught how to respect others, but are we taught how to respect ourselves? Not Really! Because of this, our relationships lack harmony and our lives are filled with both inner and outer conflicts.

Lack of self respect has brought about disharmony and negativity in our lives. Hence, if we can maintain self respect, we will be able to remain stable and positive. Then, there would be no ‘tit for tat’ attitude in our lives, no misunderstandings and no disharmony.

The only way to build and strengthen self respect is to practise respecting others, regardless of what they are like or what they are up to. By doing so, we are creating respect within ourselves for the self. This is because when we are give respect to a person, we also create an image of them in our mind. In doing so, we are experiencing respect in a real way and incidentally, respect for the self is also experienced by us from within. So, follow the golden principle — “Give respect to gain respect.”

Kiran Javed Hussain Siddiqui
department of mass communication
university of karachi

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