13 Clear Signs You Respect Yourself (That Many People Simply Fail To See)

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No more self-neglect; it’s time for self-RESPECT!

Do you know your worth? Do you treat yourself well? Do you value your time, energy, and other precious resources?

If you embody the following 13 signs of self-respecting behavior, the answer to those questions is an emphatic YES!

1. You express your thoughts and needs in a clear, authentic way.

Being able to clearly communicate your needs is one of the signs of self-respect that often goes unnoticed.

A lot of people find this challenging, and many even think that those who do it are selfish or self-important—but that couldn’t be further from the truth!

So long as you’re not shouting your needs at people or trying to force others to change their behavior without just cause, you’re simply showing up for yourself and advocating your needs.

It’s about being assertive, not aggressive.

2. You forgive yourself when you make bad choices rather than beating yourself up.

Being able to observe your thoughts, feelings, and actions with a level of compassion is crucial. It shows a huge level of self-respect.

Rather than judging yourself or beating yourself up, you’re able to take a step back and understand the emotions that led to your current reactions.

You respect the experiences that have led you to this point, which shows a level of emotional maturity that few people possess.

3. You recognize what it takes to achieve something instead of putting it down to luck.

Part of having self-respect is acknowledging how hard you work or how much time and effort you put into things.

Sure, there is a balance to be found between bragging and being humble—but you manage to get it right.

You take credit where credit is due rather than chalking your success up to chance or suggesting someone else was the main reason things worked out.

You accept praise as readily as you do feedback because you know how hard you work to achieve things.

Even when you do receive help, you know that your input was pivotal and that the assistance was merely a boost to your efforts.

4. You accept compliments with grace instead of batting them away.

Part of having self-respect is knowing when people are right about you!

If someone compliments your work ethic and you know you worked really hard, you’re happy to accept it.

You have an honest opinion of yourself which shows huge levels of self-respect and self-awareness.

This is an emotionally mature mindset to have, and it often goes unnoticed because it’s so rare.

5. You look after yourself, even when it’s easier not to.

Looking after yourself is a strong sign of self-respect.

You want to look after your mind and body, and you’re committed to doing so because you value your health and well-being.

You want to invest time and money into things that will make you feel good because you respect the importance of keeping your body and mind in tip-top condition.

You want to feel strong and capable, both physically and mentally, and you respect yourself enough to follow through and do just that!

You make active choices to prioritize activities that benefit your health, and you know when to take a step back when you’re pushing yourself too hard.

You don’t beat yourself up or punish yourself for making ‘less healthy’ choices, but you respect yourself enough to know when things are getting a bit too slack or starting to impact your mind or body negatively.

6. You set boundaries and you don’t feel guilty about it.

First things first—implementing a boundary is not the same as telling someone how to behave, and nor is it an excuse or justification to!

Instead, it’s about having the self-respect to know what you’re willing to stand for; what you’re willing to accept.

It’s acknowledging that you can’t control other people’s actions, but that you can control your reactions and when you choose to walk away.

You are willing to ruffle a few feathers to prioritize your well-being and you don’t feel bad for doing so.

You know that guilt is largely unjustified when you are living true to yourself and asking others to respect that.

7. You shun the status quo if it doesn’t serve you.

You don’t adhere to social expectations when they aren’t in your best interests.

You respect yourself enough to examine the norms you see around you, decide whether they are something you can accept, and reject those that you can’t.

You have learned what really matters to you and what is simply being expected of you due to the conventions that exist in society, or closer to home.

You don’t follow things blindly, whether that is the life paths most people take or the trends that proliferate fashion or the media.

You have learned to constantly recalibrate and check in with yourself to see how you’re really feeling about external circumstances.

Switching off autopilot and looking at what you need versus what you’re getting is the ultimate sign of self-respect, and it’s so overlooked these days.

8. You say no when you want to, even when it feels bad.

Learning to say no, and understanding when that’s appropriate, shows self-respect.

It highlights your understanding of your wants and needs, and it means you’re tapping into what’s going on below the surface.

You don’t need to be selfish, but you do need to evaluate the things you are being asked to do to decide whether you wish to do them.

Of course, sometimes you must find a way to compromise, but you don’t just go along with something for the sake of it.

You don’t bat an eyelid when turning down a party invite or declining a project at work IF you need or want to. If saying no is in your best interests, you’re more than prepared to say it.

9. You prioritize, and know when to walk away.

You have taken the time to figure out what you want and what’s important to you.

You know when and how to focus on yourself.

And, no, you are not some self-centered prick who only looks after number one, but you do know how to prioritize that which is closest to your heart.

You plan for the future, you put things in place to make those dreams a reality, but you also know when to let things go instead of spending time, effort, and money on something that no longer works for you.

You stick to your priorities instead of getting swept away with fleeting ideas or whims.

All this shows you respect yourself, as you’re truly listening to what’s going on in your mind and gut.

10. You let things go, even though goodbyes are hard.

You know that just because goodbyes are sad doesn’t mean you made the wrong choice!

After all, staying in a situation that is harmful to you is the complete opposite of self-respect.

You don’t feel instant relief from doing the ‘right’ thing. You will still feel awful at times, especially if it involves hurting others’ feelings.

But you know that you’ll sometimes reach a fork in the road, and you must go one way while people or circumstances go the other.

As sad as that is, you don’t hesitate to take that first step toward a brighter future. You trust your gut, you are willing to experience the short-term pain of parting ways, but you feel proud of yourself when you do the right thing for you.

11. You take responsibility for your life and actions.

You understand that no one else can live life for you and have grasped the responsibility of life with two hands.

You know that it is your effort and perseverance that will get you to where you want to go.

It’s not about taking a back seat and hoping for the best—it’s about sitting up front, navigating your way, and owning up when you take a wrong turn.

You don’t try to pass the blame for your mistakes, nor do you bemoan the things you can’t control. You ask yourself what you CAN do, and you go out and do it.

You pursue the goals and growth that point in the direction you want to travel.

12. You strive to be a positive role model.

No matter who you are, you can rest assured that how you act sows seeds in the minds of others. And that people will follow your lead, knowingly or unknowingly.

So you strive to set a good example to the world and to anyone who is watching.

Whether it is the young people in your life, your friends, or the older generations, you seek to do what you believe is right, based on your values and morals.

You may not realize it, but this is a major sign of self-respect because it demonstrates integrity and a desire to see the world a better place.

12. You recognize the value you bring to your job, no matter what you do.

You understand that the world is a complex machine, and that each cog matters.

So, no matter what your job involves, you do your very best because you see the worth that you bring to society.

Whether you are a teacher, a cleaner, a banker, or a carpenter, you know that your role is an important one.

Even if you don’t think your wage fairly reflects your contribution, you see your worth clear as day and never diminish your job when talking about it to others.

13. You maintain your dating standards no matter how lonely you feel.

If you’re dating, you’re well aware of how hard it can be to maintain your standards while remaining open-minded to potential.

Respecting yourself means not accepting less than you want simply because you’re coming from a scarcity mindset.

You know full well that it is better to be single than to settle for less than you deserve. You don’t ‘couple up’ simply to feel like you’ve achieved a life milestone or to comply with social norms.

You don’t mind waiting for the right person to come along because you know you are worth that kind of relationship.

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About The Author

Lucy is a travel and wellness writer currently based in Gili Air, a tiny Indonesian island. After over a year of traveling, she’s settled in paradise and spends her days wandering around barefoot, practicing yoga and exploring new ways to work on her wellbeing.