Respect includes being respectful with our conduct towards someone or something. How can we be respectful towards someone or something? We can be respectful through:
- Positive Attitudes – Positives ways of thinking, talking, feeling and behaving.
- Open-Mindedness – A willingness to consider new and different.
- Considerateness – Courtesy. Being polite. Showing kind regard.
- Supportiveness – Helping others. Caring for someone or something else.
Why does disrespect happens? Why might people be disrespectful?
One of the main reasons, and there are lots, people are not aware that they are being disrespectful. Now, you may be thinking of someone who you know that is disrespectful, and wonder, based on their behaviours, how this person could possibly not know that they are being disrespectful. Believe it or not, they might now know and the science tells us why.
There is a large percentage of our behaviours that are habitual. Habitual meaning normal, daily and routine behaviours. The science also tells us that 90% plus of our habitual behaviours are done at a subconscious level, meaning that we have no conscious awareness of what we’re doing at the time that we’re doing it.
Here’s the connection. If we demonstrate disrespectful behaviours and those disrespectful behaviours are habitual behaviours of ours, then there is a 90% plus chance that we have no conscious awareness of our disrespectful behaviours.
So let’s bring some conscious attention to the four primary categories of disrespect:
- Negative Attitudes – This is all about demonstrating negative attitudinal mindsets and characteristics towards someone or something, or put in other words, it’s a negative way of thinking, talking, feeling and behaving.
- Closed-Mindedness – This is a resistance and an unreceptiveness to anything new and different. It can also involve a narrow outlook or having and showing rigid opinions and beliefs.
- Disregard – This is placing little or no importance on someone or something, and also paying little or not attention to someone or something.
- Antagonism – This is active opposition that can provoke and upset someone. Or maybe it’s purposeful active opposition to provoke and upset someone.
Thinking about these four categories of disrespect, how can we help someone who is disrespectful and doesn’t know it? Or how can we help someone who is generally respectful but has some room for improvement? And how can we help someone if that someone is ourselves?
One of the best places to start is with awareness. Awareness around these four categories of disrespect: negative attitudes, closed mindedness, disregard, and antagonism.
With these four categories of disrespect, we can also itemize disrespectful behaviours associated with each category. Check out this link to a downloadable PDF which will outline these four categories of disrespect and itemize examples of disrespectful behaviours associated with each category. This isn’t an exhaustive list of all the disrespectful behaviours in the world, but certainly some of the most common ones.
Respectful Workplace Team Activity
As for next steps, get yourself a copy of the downloadable PDF, and reflecting on yourself and the examples provided, what are some of the behaviours that you might demonstrate sometimes? Also reflecting on your team, what are some of the disrespectful behaviours that your team might demonstrate sometimes?
Even better, knowing that we can have blindspots, and may have habitual disrespectful behaviours at a subconscious and unconscious level, ask someone else to review the examples, and get feedback on their perceptions of the disrespectful behaviours that you might demonstrate sometimes. Also, get someone else on your team to go through the examples and identify what disrespectful behaviours that they perceive the team might demonstrates sometimes, and compare your perceptions.