Many demand respect but sadly it cannot be commanded. On the other hand, respect is hard-earned. In this short speech let me highlight four ways you can earn respect from others.
First of all, you can earn respect with your behaviour. Let it be courteous. Treat others with the same kindness you expect them to show to you. Carry yourself with dignity and never be frivolous in good company. Remain humble and do not try to blow your own trumpet even when you have many ahcievements to your credit. Then people will respect you.
Secondly you can earn respect with your expertize. Be extremely good at something. It can be your academics, work, or hobby or something else you are passionate about. When people see your skill and the ease with which you get things done, they’ll naturally respect you.
Thirdly you can earn respect through your communication skills especially through the way you speak. Speech reveals the stuff and character you are made of. A gentle tongue can break a bone1 says the Bible. You might need to be persuasive and you might have to command at times, but when tempered with gentleness it cannot fail to earn respect from others.
Another important way you can earn respect is by your attitude. Being cool under pressure is something that marks out great captains in cricket. Being able to inspire others even when you are tested and under pressure is excellent attitude. St. Paul had this to say of this kind of attitude:
“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”2
So these are the four ways through which you can earn respect: by your behaviour, your expertize, your communication skills and your attitude. The list is not exhaustive but it is definitely a starting point from which you can start to earn respect from others.
22 Corinthians 4:8, 9.