Respect is a word most people toss around casually all the time. However, it is not as easy to attain as it seems. Quite the opposite, a lot of people struggle with getting the respect of their peers and superiors.
However, we would say that the right term for getting respect is commanding it. Don’t get mistaken here, though. This notion does not equal aggression, respect out of fear, or anything similar.
Our goal is to highlight the importance of being adaptable and intelligent in social interactions. Hence, the right questions would be: how to command respect in a fun, subtle, and polite way?
In this article, we’re going to cover exactly that!
What is respect?
One of the bigger problems is that a lot of people interchange respect with authority. Simply put, people think that if you’re in a position of power, then it is a given. In reality, this is a big misconception.
Respect is the admiration we feel towards other people based on their personality, behavior, actions, or achievements. As you can see, this doesn’t come simply from something as trivial as a position of authority.
Rather, respect is a bigger deal than just that. Demanding respect is not the best route to getting it.
After all, how would it sound if you tried to run around forcefully convincing people that you are an easy-going person? Right, it makes little sense.
Now that we have defined it, let’s start looking into how to command respect naturally.
The essential thing you need to know about people is that whatever you say and whatever you do teaches them how you want them to treat you.
If you talk deprecatingly about yourself, it’s only natural for them to think the same is okay for them to do as well in your regard.
By simply being respectful towards yourself, you’re teaching others to do the same.
It sounds like a simple enough thing to do, right?
Here is a piece of simple advice:
Try to think of the person you respect the most and treat yourself the way you treat them!
People tend to respect people who have integrity more so than others.
Because people with integrity are honest and consistent in who they are. There is much admiration towards people who are unafraid of sticking to their morals despite changing contexts.
Think of it from your own perspective – wouldn’t you automatically respect someone who shows substance?
Of course, you would, and the opposite is true for someone who is shifty and unreliable. So, if you want to command respect, make sure your integrity defines you.
Popularity is irrelevant.
If the sole reason you’re wondering how to command respect is so, you’ll make a certain type of impression on a larger group and get fame out of it; you might as well give up. Just like you can’t fake competence, respect is not something you can attain for a motive or by pretending.
You’ll be respected when you have what it takes for people to treat you that way. We are helping you on that journey!
Sure, a lot of us have a few mental notes on how we’d like to improve ourselves and how we want others to see us. But if the sole focus is to make yourself appear something you’re not, then the effort is futile.
Manifest your expectations.
Make sure that others know how you expect them to treat you.
However, verbal communication is not the only way for this. Even though it is an option, it is best not to use it until you have exhausted other methods.
A good way to command respect is to subtly show people how you think you deserve to be treated.
The use of indications, references, and examples are all good ways. But of course, as mentioned before, the best and most effective way is to treat people the way you would like for yourself and then expect them to reciprocate.
Manifesting your expectations is a good way to command respect, especially since humans aren’t mind-readers.
Many times people confuse being assertive with being disrespectful, which couldn’t be more wrong.
Assertiveness demands that one is open enough to state what they believe is right in a polite and balanced manner. Being assertive is important because it gives you the advantage of cutting off those who are constantly disrespectful to you.
Assertiveness also serves to pass on the right message to those around you. If you want to know how to command respect and do it politely and subtly, then broadcasting yourself as an assertive being will do the trick!
If you want to command respect, then the most simple way is to be someone truly worthy of it.
If you’re disrespectful, rude, cunning, and rarely do what you say, don’t be surprised if commanding respect seems impossible.
Instead, be sure you’re someone who deserves it. Do not play the blame game in this regard. You are the sole responsible individual for your personality. You may not be in control of the image society has of you – but you can control how you carry yourself in everyday situations.
Sure, all of us think we’re the best out there. But a little honest self-inspecting does more good than anything. Instead of feeling that we are entitled to respect, we must command it in a way that creates an automatic compulsion in those around us to deem us worthy of it.
Body language is key.
Remember that body language is the most fundamental aspect in commanding respect.
Because steady body language shows confidence and people tend to respect those who can hold their ground.
Ensure your gestures, posture, expressions, and appearance align with the kind of treatment you want from others.
Think of a slouching, shaky, and nervous fellow. Would you respect them or feel sorry for them?
Of course, confident body language mastery is quite a hill to climb. Nevertheless, we all have to start somewhere and improve little by little along the way.
To wrap things up, here is a quick little checklist on how to command respect:
- Understand that you need to earn respect, not demand it. Remember that authority does not equal respect.
- By respecting yourself, you send a message to others that you want them to treat you the same.
- Make sure you have integrity. Stand for your values and beliefs.
- Don’t try to pretend your way into this. Commanding respect is a lifelong journey, and it’s impossible to shortcut your way into it.
- Be assertive and make sure you get your message across when you need to do so.
- Work on yourself every day to become worthy of respect.
- Develop confident body language – this includes everything from the way you walk to the way you make eye contact and shake hands.
To put it shortly, a good way to know how to command respect is to make a mental list of all the things that make you respect someone and then stick to them. Always keep it in the back of your head and revise it daily.