Self Respect

In yesterday’s email, we read about Pat Summitt’s Definite Dozen, her twelve rules of leading people.  The number one club in her leadership bag was: Respect Yourself and Others.  And her three points to highlight her beliefs:

1.        There is no such thing as self-respect without respect for others.

2.       Individual success is a myth. No one succeeds all by themselves.

3.       When you ask yourself, “Do I deserve to succeed?”, make sure the answer is yes

What is self-respect?  Does this come easily?  It should, but often we lose our way and give in to the demands of others.  Always check these five areas to make sure your self-respect is in perfect alignment.. 

1.        Chose friends carefully—and always cut ties with narcissistic people who demand from you.  Don’t let energy vampires, take your energy—find the right people to learn and grow.

2.       Learn to say no—don’t be afraid to say no to anyone, friends, family, or business associates.  Protect yourself at all time.  Saying no is critical to earning your self-respect.

3.       Value your time—remember time is money, never waste a second.

4.      Handle confrontation.  Be willing to express your true feelings when asking a question or an opinion. And never get angry if they don’t follow the advice.   

5.       Never care about social acceptance—be your own person.  Don’t worry about what others think or do, have a mindset of improving each day. 

As Coach Summitt writes, to gain respect for yourself, you must respect others first—which means you are willing to listen/hear different viewpoints valuing the conversation even if it might be different than your own.   Which flows into Summit’s second point:   Individual success is a myth. No one succeeds all by themselves—you need to listen and hear from all sides.

Jack Nicholson, the famous actor and courtside fan of the Los Angeles Lakers, once said:

 “I love discourse. I'm dying to have my mind changed. I'm probably the only liberal who read Treason, by Ann Coulter. I want to know, you understand? I like listening to everybody. This, to me, is the “elixir” of life.”

Elixir is the keyword in the quote.  Why?  Because the way Nicholson uses the word, the definition becomes: “a preparation supposedly able to prolong life indefinitely.” And to prolong life, we must embrace discourse, always being mindful of having your mind changed, and most of all become willing to support your position by allowing others to question you, which then will enable you to respect others than yourself.   

When Alabama’s head coach Nick Saban was Bill Belichick’s defensive coordinator in Cleveland, both men have great defensive minds—however, both saw playing defense differently.  Saban wanted to adjust everything on the go and then attack, Belichick wanted to perform fundamentally fast and straightforward.  They were as different as night and day—yet they both listened to each other intently, with great interest because they both had self-respect as well as respect one another.  Their self-respect and mutual respect made their partnership grow. 

The next time you are in a meeting or listening to someone on television who is saying the complete opposite of what you believe, stop and listen intently.  The only way you can know your position is correct is to examine the other side thoroughly, and when you do, you will gain the respect of others as well as yourself. 

With self-respect, you have the first required leadership club in your bag and will always believe in your self. 

Please forward and share this email with your friends and family.

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