I love it when I talk to old people. It is easier to talk with them, you can see honesty in their eyes when they talk and they seldom use words that you don't get these days. They must have been thinking that their days is about to come that is why you will feel the honest stories. And the words that they use perhaps is beautiful because they have learned that talking with sense is better. I mean they have come far when it comes to experience and they know being disrespectful to others will always have a bad ending and you will feel that once you listen and hear what they have to say.
One night, a long time ago, lights were out and it is only me, our maid and my grandfather who was looking after me and my sister. I was in college back then and had no evening plans that time and it was a weekend. My sister was out and I am not sure whether it was because she was working late or a night out with friends. So it was me, a candle and my grandfather talking in the living room, trying to kill some time.
We were sharing stories and of course his stories are richer than mine. He have this way of telling you stories but at the end it was a lesson that he is trying to pass to me. I couldn't remember all what he said but I know those were just repeat stories but much detailed. I guess after that night I had two things. A personal first hand interview with someone that have lived during the War with lessons about what happened up until the rich history of the 70's. This first thing have been my share when it comes to talking with older people. And I honestly got impressions that "How did you come to know that? You were not even born that time." Second is that my out most respect to elders. See, you will never know what they have been through unless they will tell you that and you must be ready if they are about to open their mouth because it is either fascinating stories you will get or lessons that you won't get from any books.
Remember back in school (if ever this is taught) that a person's life have phases. First is the "I" where you take care and only think for yourself. This may end about somewhere during your teenage years. Then the "We" or the "Family" that end somewhere after college and the final phase is the "All" or the "Community". So this is drawn on the board by our teacher like there is a stick person and there is a circle around it, which represent only the person then a bigger circle that represent your family and a bigger circle that represent the community. I really hope that you are getting the picture.
Of course, we sometimes we forget this along the way, but you have to start to the inner circle again then crawl yourself back to be aware of all things around you.
Start earning respect by giving it first to yourself. It can be as simple as, dress appropriately where ever you are going. Not only you pamper yourself, it can boost confidence since you know that you are looking good. Eat well, because what ever you put inside you shows outside. Read to keep you well informed about what is happening around you plus it keeps you busy with quality.
Well family is self explanatory. Whenever it is possible have time with them, no matter how hectic your schedule will be. If you can't make it to a family reunion, say it in advance and don't expect that if they are not available is that it is a sign of disrespect. Remember you should respect time too and others' schedules. And try to think twice before doing something instead of having time with them. You can always do time with yourself if they are busy with other things.
Last will be the community, this could be that if you are invited to join an organization don't hesitate to say no if you really can't commit. Chances are you may say "I love to join, but my schedule will not match with the duties, but I will help as much as I can if you will consult anything that I am aware of." But if you can, then why not, right?
So respect the time by knowing that you are not a kid anymore so stop living on the bubble that you just have to take care of yourself. Or you are still a kid and just look after yourself first and time will come that you will be responsible for the people around you.
You will not get respect if you will not start somewhere. Start from yourself then to your family and all the way to the community where you are involve. Because you don't want to end up being old and having no great stories to say because you haven't age the way that you suppose to be. You really want to speak up even if you are just a kid, but don't forget that make your ears bigger first before your mouth. Input things that are crucial and just keep the rest somewhere as a reference. Once you have earned what you think the deserving respect that you should be getting, practice humility and this respect that you have earned will be passed on to many generations.