Throughout our life, we come across all kinds of people who take us on a roller coaster of emotions. From joy, love, respect to sadness, anger, or hate, we feel all these emotions daily! But among all these emotions, we believe love and respect are the two most important foundations on which every relationship should stand. Period!
Likewise, if you’re searching for a partner in life and thinking whether you should look for love or respect in his/her personality, the best thing would be to look for both! You may think love is all you need, but if you dive deeper, you’ll soon realize that love alone cannot sustain a relationship!
This leads us to the ultimate question – Love or Respect, what should you live by? If you want our strong opinion on this, our answer is respect! Why? Because even if you respect a person out of sheer good morals without actually loving that person, it is still regarded as respect. But if you love someone and not respect them, the whole point of love diminishes!
However, having said that, different people have different priorities in life. Some may prefer love over respect and vice versa! Hence, choosing between love and respect is ultimately a matter of choice and preference!
To help you get a better idea, we’ll take you through the importance of each emotion separately! You can give it a read, and hopefully decide which emotion you would prioritize or if you’d give equal importance to both!
Let’s first talk about Love.
Love is one of the strongest, if not the strongest emotion. Also, love is subjective. Meaning, different people have different interpretations when it comes to this boundless emotion. Thus, it would be unfair to put it into a single definition!
When asked about love, a ten-year-old kid may tell you about his mom and dad, or his love for toys and chocolates. On the other hand, a 50-year-old man may show you a picture of his wife! Hence, love is a universal feeling that has unlimited variations and meanings.
When it comes to romantic relationships, you may feel love is all about attraction, affection, courtship, passion, intimacy, etc. However, love is so much more than that. It is also about patience, understanding, commitment, compromise, and much more.
Let us take a look at the famous triangular theory of love by Robert Sternberg to get a clearer perspective on the definition of love.
In a nutshell, in his Triangular Theory of Love, Robert Sternberg states that love has three components – Intimacy, Passion, and Commitment.
Here are the definitions of the three components, according to Robert Sternberg.
Passion: “the drives that lead to romance, physical attraction, sexual consummation, and related phenomena in loving relationships.”
Intimacy: “feelings of closeness, connectedness, and bondedness in loving relationships.”
Commitment: Sternberg gives two different definitions of commitment -” the decision that one loves a certain other” (short-term) and “one’s commitment to maintain that love” (long-term)
This is just a single explanation of love. But it is a simple and easy one! Hence, we hope this has given you a better understanding of love.
Oxford dictionary defines respect as _‘a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievement.’ _Respect, like love, is universal. And thus, it also means different things to different people. In fact, several cultures also practice different gestures to show respect, such as handshakes, bowing, being polite, etc.
As kids, we’ve always been taught to respect people in authority, our parents, and everyone older than us. But respect is not limited to that! Giving respect is a part of being a good-hearted and kind person, and it should come naturally.
Likewise, when it comes to friendships and romantic relationships, respect is vital. Many people think that if you love each other, that will get you through everything in life. However, remember, the relationship between lovers, spouses, and friends are fragile, and if you don’t have a solid foundation, you’ll never know when it crumbles.
Understanding the whole concept of respect is not as complicated as love, but there are also multiple explanations and debates on respect. After all, love and respect are simply what people feel. And hence, since not all human beings feel and reflect the same way, everyone has their own interpretations.
What is the difference between Love and Respect?
Both love and respect are what keeps our relationships going! If either of the two is missing in any relationship, it is most likely to end soon! However, there is one major difference between love and respect.
You don’t love or fall in love with every single person that comes into your life. But you can always respect everyone you meet. You can put it in this way – love is for special people in your life like your family, friends, partners, spouses, etc. But respect is meant for everyone.
Most people think respect should be earned. However, you can’t earn respect unless you treat people well. Thus, make sure to respect everyone unless you have a strong ethical and logical reason not to.
A quick hack to having respect is learning good manners and nowadays most people forget about this.
It’s no surprise that nobles back in the old days gave this so much importance. It’s not just for a matter of courtesy and showing respect for the other. Showing good manners instantly puts you in a higher position (aka respect-worthy).
Love and Respect should go hand in hand
By now, we hope you have a better understanding of the importance of love and respect in our lives. If we look at it closely, the two emotions are closely linked. If you say you love someone, then you’ll automatically treat that person in the right way. You’ll look up to them, have the utmost respect, and always wish the best for them.
However, respect should be mutual and not just a one-sided path! The traditional concept that a woman should respect her man, and in return, the man should love her is long gone! Today, the only way to enjoy an ideal relationship is through mutual love and respect.
You should give as much love and respect you expect from your other half. But remember, your partner should also give in equal efforts to make the relationship work!