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There is no education like adversity.
-- Benjamin Disraeli


The MONTHLY Motivator - November 2003


How would you like to benefit from the good fortune of another? How would it be if you could make someone else’s power or influence your own? What if you could gain valuable knowledge and wisdom from someone who has a proven track record of success? All these things and more are possible when you are willing to think, act and live with respect toward others.

Just about everyone wants to be respected. But too few people realize that there’s another side of respect which is just as important as being respected, if not more so. This “secret” power of respect comes from respecting others.

There is something very powerful which can make you stand out from the rest of the crowd in just about any situation. That something is respect. When you act with sincere respect toward others, it gives you a decided advantage. Respect is indeed a valuable and extremely effective strategy for success.

And it is available to anyone. Even a person who has no money in the bank, no friends, no family, no skills, no special knowledge, no property, no job, and no ambition has something very valuable to offer others -- respect.

People do all sorts of things to get respect. Enormous amounts of energy are expended every day in the pursuit of respect. Many of these efforts are very productive, though others are not. People even go so far as to kill other people in order to get respect. But such effort is sadly and tragically misplaced. The surest way to gain respect for yourself is to exhibit sincere respect toward others.

When you respect another person it gives you a special kind of access to that person. No, you don’t automatically get their mobile phone number or the key to their front door. What you do get is an increased understanding and rapport, and that can be priceless. If you’re a salesperson, respecting your prospective customers will bring you business. If you’re a teacher, respecting your students will add tremendous effectiveness to your teaching. If you’re an athlete, respecting the other team will help you to win the game. There are countless situations in which respect can provide you with a significant advantage.

Often, we’re tempted to withhold respect because we think that the other person doesn’t “deserve” that respect. That may indeed be true, though we’re rarely in a position to make such a judgment. The person may not deserve any respect. Yet it still is in your best interest to respect that person, not because of what he or she will gain from it, but because of what it will bring you.

Though nearly everyone wishes to be respected, respect is not a gift that you give. It is, rather, a method for relating that provides you with a significant advantage.

When you act with genuine respect you interact with the other person on the highest possible level. It’s entirely possible that you may not receive any respect in return, but that’s the other person’s problem, not yours.

The respect you exhibit toward others will come back to you over and over, and will bring many good things to your life. Every day is abundant with opportunities for using the power of respect. There are numerous ways in which you can exhibit respect toward others, and thereby tap into its valuable power.

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--Ralph Marston

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