What is self-respect?

This article will discuss what self-respect is. It will explain its definition, and why it is so important. Aside from that, the article will highlight ways for you to work on your self-respect.

What is self-respect? 

Self-respect means that you are a person that knows your worth. You understand that you deserve good things, and will only treat yourself according to this belief. 

When you have self-respect, it will often lead you to believe that you deserve healthy love, good relationships, consideration, opportunities, and to live a fulfilling life. A person that has self-respect will show through their actions towards themselves how they expect others to treat them.

It means that you won’t step over your values, notions of what is right, and boundaries for the benefit of others. You will likely feel more confident with yourself, and won’t constantly compare yourself to others, since you have a clear notion of your worth.

When you have self-respect you will, as said before, believe in yourself, and feel comfortable challenging yourself towards achieving what you want out of life. And once you reach what you wanted, you will be more than glad to recognize what you have done and be proud of your accomplishments.

Having self-respect means that you are treating yourself as well as you treat others. You recognize yourself as a priority and should be treated with dignity. You can easily be assertive without being arrogant because you know the good you deserve.

But there is a difference between self-respect and feeling entitled. When you have self-respect you know life won’t always be easy, and that you may be wrong in some moments in your life, but you are willing to look at those and look to grow with them. 

Not just acting as if you are the one that has all of life’s answers, which would make you entitled.

Why is self-respect important? 

Having self-respect is extremely important because it is a way of praising, and supporting yourself. When life gets difficult, if you have self-respect you will likely work towards making yourself feel better, and not rely on other people’s views, and expectations of you.

It is also important since it is the way you will show others how you want to be treated. If you don’t have self-respect, you will likely accept pretty much anything others will do to you. And they will keep doing it because they know you take it.

Because of that, when you lack self-respect you will also attract to the life of people that will not be considerate of you. In a nutshell, the lack of self-respect will be a huge factor in how you relate to other people.

So if you feel like you are lacking self-respect, know that there are some ways you can work on it. Let’s discuss what they are.

What are ways to work on your self-respect? 

If you are in need to work on your self-respect, here is what you can do.

Try to understand who you are 

Not having self-respect can often be related to losing track of who you are, and what you stand for. If you are willing to work on that, you may want to rethink your values, what are your goals, and desires in life.

Writing down questions about those matters, such as:

  • What are my goals in life?
  • What am I doing to get there?
  • What do you admire in life?
  • What are things you are not willing to compromise in life?
  • What do you want to be remembered by?
  • What is important to you in all of the relationship forms?
  • How do you treat people that think differently from you?

Answering those questions may give you a clear notion of who you are, your worth, and how you act in the world, helping you sustain yourself better, and in consequence respect yourself more.

Look back at your relationships 

The lack of self-respect can be, unfortunately, a consequence of things you went through in the early years of your life. You may have been raised in a way that you felt you should always be willing to side with people, which affected your self-respect.

And it is likely that, even now, there are still a lot of people in your life that still require that type of relationship. As you begin to understand more about who you are, it is important that you re-examine your relationships, and consider if you still need people around you that won’t respect you.

In this moment of rebuilding your self-respect, surround yourself with people that are supportive, caring, and attentive to what are your boundaries, so they will likely respect you.

Focus on what you love, and self-care

Focusing on activities you love, and caring for yourself is a great act of self-respect. Learning what brings you joy, nourishes you, and makes you feel relaxed, happy, and excited will ultimately make you have a clear notion of what you are standing up for.

If you don’t know how to do that, you may want to start considering a new hobby, creating goals based on what you want to achieve, taking some rest, spending time in nature, or even starting an exercise routine.

Be caring about your needs

It is a reality: if you don’t recognize or stand up for your needs, no one ever will. It is quite easy to get lost in what other people expect from you, and as you have a decreased sense of self-respect, you may feel that what you want or need is not important, and will often push that to the end of the list of your priorities.

But understanding that those needs are important, and validating them can be a great step toward self-respect. And not only that, it is only by nourishing your needs that you will be able to move towards what would make you happy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): What is self-respect? 

What causes people to have low self-esteem?

Low self-esteem can be connected to various factors. Commonly it can be related to your relationships. If it is something you notice it has been following all through your life, your self-esteem issues likely come from your parents’ upbringing.

In those cases, it can be that it got to this place because your parents were overly critical of you. But it may also be related to other relationships you had in your life. It could be a response to teachers that demanded too much of you, or of romantic relationships that were abusive.

Not doing great in school, lr at your job can also harm your self-esteem, in the same way as dealing with extremely stressful situations such as a financial problem, or even a chronic illness. Low self-esteem can also be a consequence to mental health issues such as anxiety, and even depression.

What are signs that a woman has low self-esteem?

When a woman has low self-esteem, it can be noticed by people around her. That is because they will often display to others that they are not feeling confident on who they are, how they feel, or even how they speak.

Because of that, she may distance herself from others, or can even become aggressive towards others. All of that can make the woman feel unstable, and lead them to feel like they are losing control of all aspects of their lives.

It can also lead her to focus on her problems, and completely lose perspective of other matters around her. Because she doesn’t feel too good about herself, whatever criticism you may do, will often be perceived as way harsher than it was intended. 

A woman with low self-esteem can also have difficulty asking people for help, and be in constant fear of failing. And to prevent others from leaving her, she may want to try and do all she can to please other people. 

Sometimes, when women are unable to deal with the problems brought on by low self-esteem, they can even turn to alcohol, or drugs as a way to cope, even though they know this may not be the healthiest way to do so.

What happens when I start to respect myself?

As you begin to respect yourself more, you may notice that not only your relationship with yourself will change, but also the relationship you have with people around you. You will feel more confident, and have a clear view in your mind of what you deserve.

As you know that, you will stop taking things that you consider to harm your sense of self, or that are even demeaning to you. 

Respecting yourself will also likely cause you to remove from your life people that tend to treat you in a bad manner, or disregard your thoughts, or feelings, allowing yourself to focus primarily on positive relationships that offer you the possibility of growth, communication and exchange.

How can I show others I respect them?

If you want to show others you respect them, you may do so by listening to what they have to say. Being able to hear them is showing that, to you, what they are saying is valuable. You should also use your words to let them know you respect them.

To do so you can validate their opinions, or something they have done. And even though the two of you don’t see things in the same way, you can show them respect by empathizing with what they are saying, even if you reslectfulky disagree.

Apologizing when you have done something wrong, and being able to discuss will not only show them you respect them, but also that you are a mature person. Being grateful for what the person has done to you, when they are considerate, is also a way to respect them.

In the same way as giving them praise for what they have done, and keeping your word when you have said to them you would do something.

Can someone be quietly confident?

Yes, it is possible for someone to be quietly confident. People around them may not have a full grasp on what it is, but a person that is quietly confident will often have the energy around them of self-assurance, and let others know that they feel strong, without ever saying one word that highlights they are confident.


This article helped you understand a little more about the concept of self respect. It explained what it is, its importance, and how to work on your self respect.

If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write it in the section below.




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