When we think of the people we truly admire now and in history, it’s because of their self-respect and not their outside achievements. We can all name more than one celebrity who had “it all”, talent, awards, money and fame, only to have it all come crashing down. Their self-esteem and self-confidence might have brought them to the top but their lack of self-respect brought them down.
I use an analogy of a broken shopping cart to explain the importance of self-respect in determining your path in life. Have you ever been to the grocery store, got a shopping cart and then found it had a bad wheel? Every time you go to push it down the aisle it starts to veer off into the shelves and you have to keep pulling it back or it’s going to crash into something. Your self-respect is your carriage that guides you through life, while everything in it is the outside “stuff”. If your base or carriage is faulty it doesn’t matter how many achievements, awards or money you have.
As the mother of a teenage daughter, I know it will serve her much better in life to learn to nurture her self-respect rather than have her become dependent upon constant praise and attention from outside herself in order to be happy.
People who have self-respect:
- Know who they are and never apologize for who they are.
- Like and excel at being who they are.
- Won’t settle for relationships that are not good for them.
- Don’t concern themselves with how others perceive them.
- Are able to say ‘no’ to things that don’t suit them.
- Won’t compromise their values to ‘fit in’.
- Take responsibility for themselves.
- Are honest with themselves.
- Know their time is valuable.
- Never give up on themselves.