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Think about treating everyone with dignity and respect. Think about always interacting with someone in a way that builds them up. How many times have we told our students that we should always treat everyone with dignity and respect? How many times have we tried to reframe things in such as a way as to build someone up? How many times have we thought about taking this down a level?

How much attention do we pay to treating ourselves with dignity and respect? Do we always interact or treat ourselves in a way that builds us up? I have been hearing trainers make comments such as “there is nothing interesting or special about me,” “I’m dyslexic, ADD, and OCD and had problems in school,” or “I’m so nervous, I don’t think I can do it.” Do those comments sound like they are coming from a person that is treating them self with dignity and respect or building themselves up?

We each need to take a few minutes a day, every day, and start to catch ourselves when we make self-disparaging comments. We need to make ourselves aware of how we sell ourselves short. We need to take those observations and see them as opportunities to start practicing treating ourselves with dignity and respect. It is difficult to do. We have all made mistakes or had problems in our past, we wouldn’t be human if we were perfect. We need to see treating ourselves positively for what it is, role modeling for others around us and treating ourselves the way we teach to treat others.

I am not arguing for self-aggrandizing, over the top, egomania. That would also be wrong. That would be the equivalent of standing up for ourselves, while not respecting the rights or beliefs of others. When it comes down to it, how can we teach people to do things for others that we cannot even do for ourselves? We each need to improve our skills in treating ourselves as valuable human beings. We need to interact with ourselves in ways that build ourselves up. We need to treat ourselves with dignity and respect. If we can do that, it should be easier for our students to treat themselves with dignity and respect. Only then will they be able to treat others that way.

Dr. Dale Shannon – Mandt Faculty