7 tips for self-respect

7 Tips for Self-RESPECT & Feeling Good About Yourself

When You Lack Self-Respect

Lack of self-respect can be a major block to personal growth and self-improvement because it can impact many areas of our lives.

When we don’t value ourselves, we may struggle to assert our needs and boundaries, tolerate mistreatment from others, and pursue our goals and dreams. This can lead to feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and low self-esteem.

Here are some ways that a lack of self-respect can hold us back:

  1. Struggle to assert our needs and boundaries

When we lack self-respect, we may not feel deserving of having our needs met or our boundaries respected. This can make it difficult for us to assert ourselves in relationships and situations, and may lead to feelings of powerlessness and resentment.

  1. Tolerate mistreatment from others

When we don’t value ourselves, we may be more likely to tolerate mistreatment from others, such as being in an abusive relationship or staying in a job where we’re not treated well. This can lead to feelings of hopelessness and low self-esteem.

  1. Difficulty pursuing goals and dreams

When we don’t believe in ourselves, we may struggle to pursue our goals and dreams. We may feel that we’re not capable of achieving what we want, or that we don’t deserve success or happiness.

  1. Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness

When we lack self-respect, we may feel helpless and hopeless about our lives. We may feel that we don’t have the power to change our circumstances or create a better future for ourselves.

  1. Low self-esteem

Finally, a lack of self-respect can lead to low self-esteem. We may not see ourselves as worthy or deserving of love, respect, or success, which can impact our confidence and sense of self-worth.

When You Lack Self-Validation

The lack of self-respect, and its associated feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and low self-esteem, can spillover into negative feelings and assumptions about what you do.

In effect, when you feel less and less validated in who you are, this leads to feelings of a lack of validation what you do.

This lack of self-validation invariably means that you will seek validation from others and external situations.

For instance, if you don’t feel valued in your job or that what you do matters to anyone, you will seek to feel valued and respected through your boss and work colleagues, even your clients and customers.

Your thoughts, emotions, and behaviours will therefore reflect this need to be of value and to matter, which will be needy and self-serving. You will be motivated to do things only for the reward of being noticed and praised.

The value in doing what you do won’t be in the good you can do for your team or your customers, rather its value will only be in the good that it can bring to you.

But if that reward isn’t forthcoming, if you don’t get the attention and respect you feel you deserve from your boss, colleagues, or clients, then you will feel undervalued and resentful.

Here are some questions to consider:

      • Do you feel that what you do isn’t good enough?
      • Does the value in what you do need to be recognised?
      • Are you what you do? A human doing or a human being?
      • Do you respect who you are and what you do?

The answer to these questions will reveal how much or how little self-validation you have.

The Benefits of Building Self-Respect

Building self-respect, though, can have many benefits for your emotional and mental well-being. When you value yourself, you are more likely to:

      • Assert your needs and boundaries.
      • Set healthy goals and pursue your passions.
      • Develop healthy relationships with others.
      • Feel confident and empowered in your life.
      • Experience greater happiness and fulfillment.

Research studies highlight the importance of self-respect for personal growth and well-being, and encourage us to value and prioritize our own worth and happiness.

A study published in the journal Self and Identity found that individuals with higher levels of self-respect reported greater life satisfaction and fewer symptoms of depression and anxiety (Orth & Robins, 2014).

Another study published in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Review found that self-respect was positively associated with psychological well-being and negatively associated with symptoms of psychopathology (Crocker & Park, 2004).

So, how can we build self-respect? Here are a few things to consider:

  1. Practice Self-Care

Self-care is an important way to show yourself that you value your well-being. This can involve activities such as getting enough sleep, eating healthy foods, exercising, and engaging in activities that bring you joy and relaxation.

  1. Set Healthy Boundaries

Setting healthy boundaries is a key component of self-respect. This involves saying “no” to things that don’t align with your values or goals, and asserting your needs in relationships and situations.

  1. Celebrate Your Achievements

Take time to celebrate your achievements, no matter how small they may be. This can help you to recognize your worth and build confidence in your abilities.

  1. Surround Yourself with Positive Influences

Surrounding yourself with positive influences, such as supportive friends and mentors, can help you to develop a sense of self-worth and confidence.

  1. Cultivate a Positive Mindset

Finally, cultivating a positive mindset can help you to develop greater self-respect. This involves reframing negative self-talk and focusing on your strengths and accomplishments.

In conclusion, the lack of self-respect can be a major obstacle to personal growth and self-improvement, but building self-respect can have many benefits for our emotional and mental well-being.

By practicing self-care, setting healthy boundaries, celebrating our achievements, surrounding ourselves with positive influences, and cultivating a positive mindset, we can develop a greater sense of self-worth and confidence in our lives. Here are 7 tips to help you do this:

7 Tips for Self-RESPECT

#1: RESPOND with kindness, and don’t react with negative judgement of yourself or of others.

#2: EMBRACE your mistakes and allow yourself to fail—your greatest lessons for success will come from your failures.

#3: SERVE and treat others as you would have them serve and treat you.

#4: PRAISE yourself for your efforts and celebrate your victories no matter how small.

#5: ENGAGE help when you need it and don’t try to do everything on your own.

#6: CRY if you have to and accept your vulnerability—you’re only human.

#7: TRY and keep trying to reach your worthy goal—never give up.



#3: Self-Worth

If you don’t feel validated in why you do what you do, you will seek validation from others and external situations. For instance, if you don’t feel that your life or work has any purpose or meaning, you will seek to find meaning and purpose in things other than yourself.

Your thoughts, emotions, and behaviours will therefore reflect this attitude, which will be needy and self-serving. Either your craving for meaning and purpose will cause you to hunger for it, or cynicism will get the better of you and you’ll just give up and say life has no meaning, so why should you bother anyway?

If you hunger for purpose and meaning in external things, you will hunt with false hope, little realising that you will never capture what you are hunting because nothing can give you purpose and meaning other than yourself, and that can only be achieved with any permanence through self-love because love is the ultimate purpose and meaning of life.

Only you can love yourself. Only you can love what you do. Only you can love others as yourself. Only you can love Life. No one else can love for you. Nothing else can give you meaning.



5 Tips for Self-WORTH

#1: WELCOME the good and the bad along your path to your worthy goal—they are lessons you need to learn along the way.

#2: OFFER to help whenever you see a need—there’s a reason you are where you are at any given moment.

#3: REMEMBER that who you are and what you do matters, even if it’s difficult to see.

#4: TREASURE each moment as the gift of life that it is.

#5: HONOUR your purpose by remaining true to the path of your worthy goal.



#4: Self-Approval

If you don’t feel validated in how you do what you do, you will seek validation from others and external situations. For instance, if you don’t feel that you’re clever enough or that what you do is ever good enough in the opinion of others or even in your own opinion, you will seek to find approval and self-worth through doing rather than being.

Your thoughts, emotions, and behaviours will therefore reflect this attitude, which will be needy and self-serving. You will be motivated to be cleverer and better than others. You will become extremely competitive and you will desire to win at all costs because your sense of identity and self-worth will be dependent on your need to be first and your superiority over others. When you win and you’re the top dog, you feel great, but when you don’t win it feels as though a bottomless pit has opened in the ground and you have fallen into it.

Feelings of not being clever enough or not being good enough will also drive you to the unending search for perfectionism. The logic works this way: “If I’m perfect, who can reject me?” Not yourself and not anyone else, or so you assume.

But perfectionism is a false ideal because, first of all, there’s no such thing, so you’ll always be chasing a phantom and worshiping an illusion; and second, perfectionism gets in the way of being effective. It’s also exhausting trying to become something that you cannot ever achieve and reach an end goal that keeps on moving further out of reach.

Perfectionism is therefore a barrier to your effectiveness and succees. It gets in the way of your success because there will always be something more you can do to be perfect and thus it becomes a distraction from getting on with what you should really be doing. If you’re not careful, perfectionism can become an unintentional cause of procrastination.

I too have fallen many times into the trap of perfectionism, and every time I do so it is invariably because of my lack of feeling good enough or my fear of not being accepted. In my early years of writing at the turn of the Millenium, I could spend ages deciding on the use of a comma. Should I put it in? Should I take it out? Then I’d make a decision to put the comma in, only to suffer a gnawing doubt of whether or not it was the right decision. Then I’d delete the comma, satisfied that the sentence read much better, only to agonise over whether I should have left it in or not. I in fact edited the opening page of my medical thriller, Ananda, 17 times. Probably more, actually, 17 was when I’d had enough and stopped counting how many times I edited the first page.

Silly, really, when I look back on it, but that’s how perfectionism can get in the way of being effective. Don’t let it stop you.


Tic-Toc Method

  • Take in Calm, Turn Other Cheek
  • Increases your positive Problem Solving Orientation
  • Take in Calm:
    • 17,280 breaths per day = 17,280 opportunities to ‘take in calm’ (at approximately 12 breaths per minute)
    • overrides the primitive ‘reactive’ centre of the brain; plus it activates the Vagus Nerve (parasympathetic = calm emotions); plus it centres you in this moment of now (i.e. attentiveness Vs inattentiveness)
  • Turn the other cheek
    • builds responsiveness, not reactiveness (maturity Vs immaturity)
    • respond with positive emotions (e.g. kindness, understanding, empathy, non-judgement), not react with negative emotions (e.g. anger, hate, jealousy, pride, fear)


On the other hand, if you have a solid sense of self-worth and internal value, you will feel complete in who you are and, as such, you won’t feel needy. Instead, you will seek to give others what they are looking for and to be generous with your time, help, patience, and even money, if required.

Knowing your value and self-worth feeds into your self-belief. The more self-belief you have, the more you believe you can do it. The more you believe you can do it, the more courage and confidence you have to face down any fears and surmount any obstacle along your path to your worthy cause.


8 Tips for Self-APPROVAL

#1: ACKNOWLEDGE that you don’t know everything and can’t do it all—you’re not a robot.

#2: PRACTICE self-forgiveness every day—don’t put bricks on yourself and pile up the pressure to always be perfect.

#3: PUT one foot ahead of the other and keep climbing your mountain, because no-one else can do it for you.

#4: REACH for your worthy goal every day by doing at least 1 thing that will bring you nearer to it.

#5: OPEN your heart to self-love and close your mind to negative self-talk.

#6: VALUE who you are, what you do, why you do it, and how you do it.

#7: ACCEPT your perfect imperfections.

#8: LIVE and let live—the past is the past and all you can do is focus on this present moment, because only now are you alive.



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Dr. Scott Zarcinas | Doctor, Author, SpeakerABOUT DOCTORZED

Dr. Scott Zarcinas (aka DoctorZed) is a doctor, author, and transformologist. He helps pro-active people to be more decisive, confident, and effective by developing a growth mindset so that they can maximize their full potential and become the person they are capable of being. DoctorZed gives regular workshops, seminars, presentations, and courses to support those who want to make a positive difference through positive action and live the life they want, the way they want, how they want.

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