Can you respect yourself and live a mediocre life? If you continually do the things you know you shouldn’t, how can possibly have any self-respect?
How can an alcoholic have real self-esteem, one found outside of the bottle?
How does a guy that can’t get off the sofa, can’t turn off the television, find his time to be of any value?
If we want to be respected by others, we need to be worthy of respect. And the way to do that is to live in such a way as to garner the respect of others. It starts with us. Respecting ourselves. Not by our words but by our actions. It is evident in the way we conduct ourselves. We have to have enough respect for ourselves to live in a fashion that is worthy of respect.
So many expect and demand respect without doing anything to earn it. They expect it to be given. Of course, we should all be treated with dignity common to all humans, and we should freely treat others with that same respect. But for those who want more than this basic dignity, who want to be highly-respected, then it begins by respecting yourself.
Respect yourself and others will respect you. -Confucius