Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Intercultural Word for the Day: Respect

Every human being desires and deserves respect. What is it? Respect is a proper attitude and acknowledgement of every individual’s value as a person, regardless of personal bias, stereotype and lifestyle. Respect calls for making a genuine effort to understand and educate your self on another’s culture (sub-culture). Respect requires us to take a close look into another’s values, social customs, and traditions, without developing an ethnocentric misjudgment. Respect calls for putting your self outside your comfort zone. It takes courage to respect others, as it allows each person their dignity and worth.

Ten ways to show your Openness to Difference

  1. Use the internet to research a specific culture or subculture
  2. Attend formal intercultural training (Seek to understand)
  3. Read a book on the culture or subculture (Author from the culture)
  4. Look for celebrations/activities to attend (i.e., Asian heritage)
  5. Get out of your comfort zone (Immerse yourself)
  6. Volunteer to help
  7. Learn a new language
  8. Question your biases and stereotypes
  9. Educate yourself
  10. Have fun

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