Today, we shall be continuing in our character building series. You will recall
that last month, we dealt with honesty. This month, we shall be talking about
respect. I want you to note that these series are designed to help you obtain
the desired character traits of leaders. Always put it at the back of your mind
that you are being trained to become a leader.
What is respect?
Respect is admiration or deference for a person or some other entity eg.
A nation, a religion, a culture etc.
Respect is a feeling of regard for the actual qualities of someone (e.g., ï
have great respect for Bola’s sense of judgement”)
On a practical note, respect includes taking someone’s feelings, needs,
ideas and wishes into consideration.
Respect is similar to valuing someone and their thoughts, feeling etc. It
includes acknowledging them, listening to them, being truthful with
them and accepting their individuality and idiosyncrasies.
Respect is having regard for others. This means accepting that other
people are different but just as important as you are.
Respect is not interfering with others (or their properties).
What about having respect for yourself?
Having respect for yourself means you are able to stand up for yourself.
You do not allow yourself to be talked into doing something that you know is
wrong or makes you feel uncomfortable.
How is respect shown?
Through our behaviour
Through our feelings.
We can feel respect for someone and we can feel respected by someone. The
feeling of respect is more important than the behaviour without the feeling.
Who should be given respect?
Respect should be given to everyone we come across whether they are
young or older than us.
How do you show respect?
By asking someone how they feel.
By empathising with someone.
By trying to understand someone’s feelings.
By taking someone’s feelings into consideration.
By voluntarily making changes and compromises.
To accommodate someone’s feelings, desires and needs.
How do you earn respect for yourself?
You earn respect for yourself when you learn to be honest and caring.
You accept everyone that is different.
You try hard and you are willing to share and help others.
You can respect when you live by the values mentioned under “what is
Places where you show respect.
i) Respect at home
Home is the place where you first learn about respect.
You learn to say these three words and phrases: “Sorry”, “Please” and
You learn to share your toys, games and food with other people in your
You learn to take care of your things and other things in the house. E.g.,
the furniture, the television, your bed etc.
You learn to wait your turn in talking.
You learn to understand that you will not always get what you want.
You learn to respect others by helping with chores (house work).
You learn to respect others in the community where you live.
You learn to talk to different adults in a way they expect to be spoken to.
your older brother, your mum, your grandma, etc.
How to treat others with respect
Treating people with respect makes your world a nicer place to live
in, whether it’s at home, at work, at school, or out in your
community. And it’s easy – all you have to do is treat people the
way you like to have them treat you. Here are a few ideas.
Don’t insult people or make fun of them.
Listen to others when they speak.
Value other people’s opinions.
Be considerate of people’s likes and dislikes.
Don’t mock or tease people.
Don’t talk about people behind their backs.
Be sensitive to other people’s feelings.
Don’t pressure someone to do something he or she doesn’t
want to do.
We live in a diverse nation made up of many different cultures,
languages, races, and backgrounds. That kind of variety can make
all our lives a lot more fun and interesting, but only if we get along
with each other. And to do that we have to respect each other. In
addition to the list above, here are some ways we can respect
people who are different from us.
Try to learn something from the other person.
Never stereotype people.
Show interest and appreciation for other people’s cultures
Don’t go along with prejudices and racist attitudes.
Respect should be a way of life for you as you aspire to become a leader.
Respect has to be sent out before it can come back to you. Real respect is
earned. You can earn other people’s respect by doing the things we have
mentioned so far. i.e., taking their feelings and thoughts into consideration and
generally feeling and showing respect to them. Respect cannot be demanded