If you want to be truly respected in life, say goodbye to these 8 behaviors

We all crave respect. It’s a universal desire, isn’t it?

But how often do we feel truly respected in our day-to-day lives?

You put in the effort, act kindly, work hard, and what do you get in return? Sometimes, it feels like nothing.

It can seem like the respect you so desire is always out of reach, like you’re always trying to catch up with it.

If this resonates with you, you’re not alone.

Many of us feel this way. We feel as though our actions aren’t valued or respected.

But here’s the kicker… maybe it’s not about others not respecting us. Maybe it’s about certain behaviors we need to let go of.

And that’s exactly what we’re going to delve into today.

I’m going to share with you seven behaviors you might need to say goodbye to if you want to gain the respect you deserve.

Now, I’m not saying it’s going to be easy – some of these might be tough pills to swallow.

But, if we’re talking real, true respect? It’s worth it.

So, are you ready? Let’s dive in.

1. Being defensive

We’ve all been there. Someone criticizes us or points out a mistake, and our immediate reaction is to get defensive.

I remember once, in my early career, my boss pointed out an error in one of my reports. Instead of accepting it, I immediately started making excuses and blaming others.

It was a knee-jerk reaction to protect my pride.

But in hindsight, I realize how this behavior could have been perceived as immature and disrespectful.

Over time, I’ve learned that the key to earning respect is to take responsibility, accept criticism gracefully and use it as an opportunity to learn and grow.

2. Constant negativity

I’ll admit, I used to be a bit of a ‘Debbie Downer’. I’d find fault with everything–the weather, my colleagues, even the coffee in the break room. It was draining, not just for me but for those around me too.

But then a friend pointed out how this constant negativity was impacting others and my own mental health. It was a wake-up call.

I started making conscious efforts to be more positive and appreciative. It was hard at first but gradually, I noticed a shift in the way people interacted with me.

The more positive I became, the more respect I received.

This taught me that respect isn’t just about what you do; it’s also about your attitude towards life and those around you.

3. Gossiping

Did you know that people instinctively associate the traits they hear described with the person discussing them?

This phenomenon, known as spontaneous trait transference, means that if you’re often caught gossiping about others, people may begin to associate the negative traits you’re discussing with you.

So, if respect is what you’re after, it might be time to step away from the office gossip.

Not only does it show a lack of respect for others, but it can also negatively impact how others perceive you.

Strive to be someone who spreads positivity and encouragement instead of rumors and negativity.

4. Not keeping your word

Promises are powerful. They’re the invisible threads that bind relationships, whether personal or professional.

When we give our word, we’re establishing trust, setting expectations, and creating a sense of security.

But what happens when we break that promise? That trust, those expectations, that sense of security – they all crumble.

I remember a time when I promised to help a friend with a project. But due to unforeseen circumstances, I couldn’t follow through. The disappointment in my friend’s eyes was heart-wrenching.

From that day forward, I made a pact with myself – if I give my word, I will keep it. If there’s even a sliver of doubt, I won’t make the promise in the first place.

This approach has helped me earn respect from my friends, colleagues, and even from myself.

Because at the end of the day, respect is about trust. And trust is built on keeping your word.

5. Always needing to be right

Oh boy, this one hits close to home. I used to be that person who always had to have the last word. Whether it was at work, in discussions with friends, or even during trivial arguments about who’s the best football player, I always felt the need to be right.

It wasn’t until a close friend pointed out how this behavior was affecting our relationship that I realized the problem. She said it felt like I was more interested in winning the argument than understanding her point of view.

That conversation was an eye-opener for me. I started working on listening more and arguing less. I realized that it’s okay to not always be right and that sometimes, understanding is more important than winning.

And you know what? It made a huge difference. Not only did my relationships improve, but I also noticed a newfound respect from people around me. Turns out, being open-minded and willing to learn from others is a surefire way to earn respect.

6. Over-sharing personal information

We live in a world where it’s all too easy to share every aspect of our lives. Social media has blurred the lines between what’s private and what’s public.

I remember when I shared everything, from what I had for breakfast to my deepest feelings, on my social media platforms. It felt like being open and transparent.

But over time, I realized that there’s a fine line between being open and over-sharing.

Over-sharing can make people uncomfortable and lead them to question your judgment.

It’s crucial to maintain some level of privacy, not just for your own sake but for the comfort of those around you as well.

7. Lack of empathy

Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of others. It’s a trait that is deeply connected to respect. One cannot exist without the other.

People who display empathy are more likely to be respected by their peers.

When we show understanding and compassion towards others, we are acknowledging their feelings and validating their experiences, which in turn breeds respect.

8. Disrespecting others

The golden rule of respect is simple: treat others as you want to be treated. If you want to be respected, you need to show respect towards others.

This includes respecting their time, their boundaries, and their feelings.

No one likes to feel disrespected or taken for granted.

So next time you’re in a situation where you’re tempted to disregard someone else’s feelings or boundaries, remember – respect is a two-way street.

In conclusion, gaining respect isn’t about changing who you are. It’s about letting go of behaviors that can hinder your relationships with others.

So take a step back, evaluate your actions, and see if there’s anything you need to say goodbye to.

You might just find that the respect you’ve been seeking has been within your reach all along.

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Picture of Lachlan Brown

Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the editor of Ideapod and founder of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 6 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you to want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.

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