Rather than insisting that others respect us, we need to make sure that we are respecting others, holding others in the proper esteem. We need to make sure that we demonstrate a respect for others simply because they are here, trying their best to be all they were created to be. Those who truly live out that quality will make the best spouses, teammates, parents, friends, and business partners.
Dungy, Tony; Nathan Whitaker (2011-02-21). Uncommon: Finding Your Path to Significance (Kindle Locations 393-396). Tyndale House Publishers. Kindle Edition.
Listening is one of the best ways I demonstrate respect. Not listening so that I can jump in with a witty answer as a token of my intelligence or to prove my worth. Listening, rather, in a manner that the person I’m talking with feels that I heard them. Listening without the need to ‘get a word in edgewise.’ Listening because I believe they are created in the image of God and as such deserve my full attention at that moment.
And, when they’ve completed their thought, leaning into the quiet pause and considering their words. And, if I have anything of value, offering it as a free gift to further the conversation.
Listening, pausing, considering, offering – these seem to be a basic pattern of respect. The pattern is important whether I’m talking with a busy executive, a homeless man in my Rescue Center, one of the men in my Recovery Program, my kids, or my wife.
photo by Bindaas Madhavi