Respect is a hard to find these days. It seems that everyone is always at odds with everyone else over absolutely everything. IPhone vs Android, Mac vs PC, Republican vs Democrat. There is seemingly nowhere that someone can freely express their opinion and have a respectful discussion (except for the AfraidToAsk Forums, of course).
Respecting someone isn’t being their friend because they have money or a certain social status. Respect is a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements. You should respect someone because of the hard work and determination they displayed while achieving whatever status they have.
There a many men and women that I have for whom I have endless respect. My parents, my brothers and sister and so many of my friends have achieved so much throughout their lives that they serve as role models for me and those around me. My parents immigrated to this country with very little and now my father owns his own business. My brother studied his ass off to get into law school and now that he’s there, he’s doing amazingly well. My little sister was recruited by colleges all around the country which is something that I was never good enough at any sport to achieve. I have friends that I respect because they have forged their own paths to success and showed determination and desire throughout the entire process.
Almost all of your friends have achieved something that deserves to be celebrated. Find out what it is and acknowledge it. Tell them that you admire their achievements and, if necessary, ask them for advice on how you can follow suit. Some people have an incredible work ethic and others have a very creative mind. Both are very respectable qualities. Qualities like these are necessary if you are to build long lasting friendships.
Sometimes it may seem hard to find someone with any respectable qualities. If that is the case, then you have a few options. First, you can acknowledge that you haven’t surrounded yourself with the people you should and maybe it’s time to start looking for a new circle of friends. Surround yourself with people that you admire because of an achievement or a personal quality. If your circle of friends doesn’t have someone like this but you don’t want to change your friends, why don’t you become that person that they can admire? There is no reason why someone who has friends that have no redeeming qualities can’t have redeeming qualities themselves. Become that person they your friends can admire. Achieve something that they will want to emulate or even exceed. Some of the best friends are those that push you to be better than them. A true friend will want you to succeed and achieve more than you ever thought possible.
When I go golfing, I always go with a friend of mine that plays better than me. He’s the one that taught me how to golf in the first place. I’m always a few yards behind him. He always beats me but every time I hit the course with him, he always teaches me something and my golf game improves because of it. I swear, one of these days I’m going to beat him in a round and after his annoyance subsides, he’ll realize that I beat him because he taught me how to play properly.
What about you guys? What friend do you respect the most? What qualities would you want your best friend to have? What qualities do you have that you think people should find respectable but you don’t seem to get any acknowledgement for them? Sound off in the comments below and, of course, over in the forums.