Monday, July 29, 2013

Honoring Others

I heard a man, Danny Silk, speak this weekend about a culture of honoring others.

Imagine a world where we showed love to people instead of thinking about ourselves, even a world where we thought the best of people before we assumed that they were just being an asshole. A world where we honored each other, not for being like us, but just for being.

I truly believe in this. I want people to understand their worth. We don’t spend enough time telling people that they are worthwhile. I believe that. 

It doesn’t mean I’m always good at it. I just believe in it.

For instance, I am a writer.

When I first started this blog and became any kind of presence on Twitter and Facebook, I had nothing to talk about. I had nothing to say. So, I just started meeting people and honoring them. What do I mean by that? Let me tell you.

1.                 1.  I deferred myself to them.  I put off my needs and what I wanted so that I could take care of others. I met other writers, because writers are my heroes. I would rather meet writers than any celebrity. Just the way I am. Don’t judge. I told people about those people and I put them on a pedestal way higher than myself. Why? Because I believe that others are important. I believe that I am no better than others. I even spent time lifting people up that thought they were better than me. That’s okay. This is the crucible in which honoring others is tested. Making oneself smaller so that others, even those who don’t deserve it, can become larger. I didn’t do it for a lift later. I did it because I believe that everyone is a leader. I truly believe that everyone is special.

        2.       I treated them with distinction. When I honored people on Facebook and Twitter, I didn’t bunch them with everyone else. I gave them their own platform and told folks why I love them. I still do that. I put people on their own individual pedestal and tell people why they deserve to be there. Everyone for a different reason. Again, not to be put there myself, and in fact I haven’t been very often, but because I believe in people.

       3.       I respected them. I truly looked for things in them that made them special and I focused on  those things. In doing so, I was able to remember them for who I thought they were and not who others said they were.

Please don’t think I’m tooting my own horn on this. I’m not.  I also did this:

1.        I made one of them cry. I already understood the need to honor others, but I blew it because I forgot that honor is not assuming that everyone is going to be like you. Everyone is not. We often mistake our reverence for others as honor, when it is really that we are praising them for being so much like us, or like we wish we were. I found out that there are plenty of people who deserve my honor, that are nothing like me, and don’t do things like me.

2.       I hurt someone’s feelings. That person did not stay my friend. They never speak to me anymore. Why? Because I didn’t defer myself to them. I was very self-focused. I saw something one way, and I mouthed off. That person reeled me in with a well-placed and truthful retort that put me in my place. The friendship was never the same. Learned a big lesson that day. I’m not important, at least not more important than anyone else.

I only say all of this because Danny Silk impressed me with his honesty, and he impressed me with the gut check. I hadn’t been put in my place in a long time, and Danny Silk did it. There is so much more to this, but this is a blog post and not a book. There is still a lot for me to think about in this, but I have always been an open book on my blog and feel that it is important.

I hope that you all give some thought to this and tell me what you think about any of it. I'm not so much interested in what you think about what I did or believe, but more about what you think about honoring others. I do always want to hear from you.

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