Through life, we meet and interact with many people. Some are family members, some are friends, others are acquaintances or merely a store clerk ringing you through the checkout. Nearly every single one of these relationships treats you the way they do because you’ve probably set it up that way- good treatment or bad treatment. Some of us have family members that feel comfortable enough to pick us apart or a partner that has a fit whenever they don’t get what they want from you. Today is the day to take ownership and get respect- you have given them permission to be that way.


Let’s look at extremes first-

Think of someone in your life that no one messes with, a Darth Vader type person, for example. Is it magic that no one nitpicks them or luck that people don’t tease them? No way. These people draw a distinct line and expect others to respect it. On the other side, there’s the timid, subservient Cinderella types who let people boss them around.

Look inwardly first.

It is time for some self-evaluation to get to the bottom of this lack of respect you’re receiving. Is there anything, absolutely anything, that you could be doing to invite this treatment? Look at your responses and reactions to these people, the way you carry yourself/body language, your clothing, and your tone of voice. Are any of your behaviours weak and do they invite abuse? If you truly looked within and left all your excuses at the door, you would likely find a plethora of improvements needed.

It takes 2 to tango

Maintain a strength with humility in every interaction and that’s a fantastic start. The rest, chip away at, change by change. When it’s important to assert dominance, there’s several quick tactics that will help.

Establishing Superiority and Respect for Special Circumstances-

  • First impressions- starting today, make every new meeting one where you are carrying yourself with the maximum respect that you hope to receive from the other party.
  • Respect yourself- fake it ’til you make it if you have to. Show yourself so much respect that another person interacting with you will have no choice but to do the same.
  • Let “no” be your default answer- boundaries sometimes get pushed whether you say yes or no, but no establishes a more favourable precedent up front.
  • Short arguments/negotiations- when you engage too long in an argument, it screams “I’m willing to negotiate.” Get in, make your statements, get out, the end. An accurate and confident negotiator does not need to convince anyone.
  • Blunt and clear language- brevity and an unmistakable message gets the point across with power. No “um, ahh, like, I mean, kinda” words. Less is more, baby.
  • Ignore/no response- disarming the bully or bossy type can be as simple as ignoring or not responding. There is a delicate way to pull it off without making the situation worse. It has to be done with an air of “I don’t care because I’m above that. This interaction is over.”
  • Thousand yard stare- look directly into their eyes, as if looking straight through them without blinking for long periods of time. Nah, this one was is just for fun, but’s there’s a little truth to it. See “eye contact” in your researching.


To sum it all…

Respect for yourself and others is always important and is one of the first habits to adjust. I use “no” in my rentals. They ask if they can paint the room, my answer is “no.” They ask if they can pay half rent now and make it up to me, I say “no.” Imagine how often they would be doing it if I started saying yes. In the first place, their question implies that they expect you may say no, but they’re trying anyways. Let the no’s roll off your tongue like butter.

I used to get caught up in arguments with tenants that went round and round. Big mistake. For every minute I hung around, it invited them to argue their point more and show them that their point was valid enough that I would consider hearing it. What should have been communicated was, regardless of whether I was right or wrong, “my roof, my rules.” What works well with that is disregarding nonsense arguments and statements. Text message is wonderful at communicating finality. If an ex that you’re trying to get rid of keeps buzzing you, quit responding!

Respect to all!

Read more: How to Make Friends – The Next Level

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