One of the changes I am making in my life is deepening respect for myself and others.
Respect is admiration or reverence for someone or something. I noticed some time ago that out of efficiency, I was semi-consciously breezing through tasks, conversations and decisions in order to “get to the good stuff” or what I assumed was of a higher priority.
When the idea of MORE came to me, it was an outgrowth of realizing how little respect I had for the present moment; i.e. admiration or reverence for what is occurring now. My focus was more on accumulating knowledge rather than paying attention to what was knowable at this very moment.
As I’ve mentioned before, changing our habits is at the core of changing our lives. While many habits manifest as certain behaviors, they begin deeper than that. As a belief system or point of view. There are two ways of approaching a habit change. From the outside in; change the behavior which will affect our beliefs and perceptions, or alter the beliefs and perceptions which will impact the behavior.
It feels more difficult to change how we are believing or perceiving because these patterns are so ingrained in us. However, changing a behavior can have incredible impact on our beliefs and perceptions.
When I think of respecting myself and others, the behavior that comes to mind is intentionally taking a few seconds to pause and acknowledge what I am thinking and feeling before I begin an interaction with someone. This raises my awareness to admire and revere the fact that I even have this ability to think and feel as part of what I am. Which automatically leads me to respect the same awesome ability in other people.
As a result of cultivating this habit to pause before I jump into the substance of what an interaction is about, a spontaneous reverence emerges over the recognition that we are even here at all to have this interaction.
This new perspective comes from a small behavior adjustment, a pause. It’s interesting how a quick reflection such as this can have such incredible impact. It changes how I might normally view an interaction. Rather than mundane and predictable, my choice to pause creates a moment of admiration and wonder. This can transform disagreements by putting them into perspective – as only one aspect of a larger, much greater whole.
If you want to cultivate the habit of respect, just pause and admire life being lived through yourself and others right now. From this awareness new choices to learn, grow and flourish become available.
Respect takes only a moment and it can alter everything.
Today’s 5-minute action item – Write down all the ways you may not be respecting yourself or others. How do you forget to admire, revere or honor what is valuable? Do you agree that every person (yourself included) or situation has some thread of worthiness that you can notice? Jot down your thoughts and if inspired, write down one small behavior change you can implement that will cultivate respect.