Self-respect can be something that’s hard to learn, and not everybody can master it. However, once you do learn how to respect yourself, there are a lot of things that you’ll start doing differently, sometimes to the point where the people around you just don’t get it. We’ve put together this list of 13 things you do when you start respecting yourself.
1. Refuse to play peacemaker
It’s not up to you to resolve somebody else’s problem, even if they occur between two people that you know. When you respect yourself, you recognize that their problem is not your problem and you allow them to work it out or not rather than putting yourself out there to try to fix it.
2. Wait to respond to texts/messages
At some point, you felt rude if you didn’t answer a text or message within a few minutes, but once you learn to respect yourself, you realize that you have more important things to do than answer texts all day and don’t feel guilty if a friend has to wait for you to reply when you’re ready.
3. Do what you want, when you want
If you’re out with friends and want to go home, you do it, without apologizing or making excuses. Respecting yourself also merely means saying no when someone asks if you’re going to hang out when you’re not feeling it because you’re putting your happiness first.
4. Refuse to explain yourself
When you respect yourself, you don’t feel the need to explain yourself to anybody. You don’t need to tell your new coworker why you chose that job or to your nosy aunt why you’re currently single. You realize that you don’t need anyone else to validate or approve of your life choices.
5. Avoid negativity
There are environments, people, and conversations that only bring negativity into your life, and when you respect yourself, you avoid them. Sometimes that means shutting down a negative talk, and sometimes that means blocking someone from social media.
6. Correct others when necessary
This is about taking control of your life, and not being afraid to correct someone when they’re making incorrect assumptions or misspeaking about your experience. If someone calls you something you don’t like, you let them know what you want to be called.
7. Push yourself
Respecting yourself means no longer accepting excuses from yourself, and not allowing yourself to be lazy. You know that you deserve to have everything that you want, so you start looking for it and push yourself to get it.
8. Live up to your expectations
Rather than worrying about what others expect of you, you set up your expectations for your life, and then you live up to those. You know that other people’s expectations of you and your life are designed to make you fail or hold you back.
9. Handle your emotions without drugs or alcohol
Only those who don’t respect themselves drown their sorrows in alcohol or drugs. When you respect yourself, you avoid damaging your body and instead healthily work through your emotions so you can get over them rather than just covering them.
10. Know when to step in and when to stay out of arguments
When it comes to differing opinions on social media, there’s a time to stand up for your beliefs and a time to keep out of things. When you respect yourself, you learn the difference and can choose when to step in to defend your belief and when to stay silent.
11. Wear what you want
Self-respect means you wear whatever you want to wear because you like it and it makes you comfortable, and not worrying about what others have to say about it. This also means that you ignore comments of people that aren’t afraid to let you know exactly what they think of your body.
12. Change your mind
When you respect yourself, you recognize that it’s your right to change your mind about something at any point in time and for any reason. You no longer stick to your first decision only because you’re afraid of what others will think or say.
13. Take responsibility for your actions
That means you apologize for the things you’ve done wrong and only those things. If you know you haven’t done something wrong, you refuse to apologize for it. Taking responsibility also means stepping up and fixing your mistakes.