I think one clear way you can respect the time others take to devote to you or your needs is to imagine walking in their shoes.
If you treat people the way you would like to be treated, you are bound to be given the treatment you ask for.
If you call for a meeting at a set time, be there on time. If you take a call, accept no distractions or interruptions on the call. You cannot always control the distraction. For example, you cannot prevent someone from barging into your room but you could put a sign up or notify people that you are about to take a call. You can indicate that you are otherwise busy when someone decides to come into your room despite a notice. If a call comes in one phone, while you attend to another call, you can ignore it and let it ring out or mute it.
You decide what you need to do at any one point – you do not let circumstances dictate that for you. A ringing phone is best answered but if the situation calls for it, it may sometimes to prudent to let it ring out while you attend to something else.
If you call for a meeting and you check out by getting distracted by emails, calls or texts on your phone, you may not be vigilant about the message you send out with your action. But if you were to stop and consider, it would be obvious what that message is. And that is not pleasant. Not for you and certainly, not for the recipient.
So, it’s a simple plan but one that is difficult to execute at the best of times, given the number and variety of challenges you face in this very arena, on a daily basis.
More importantly, all these things can happen to you. However, you should make a stand about how you want to run your life, and the values you want to embrace. Things can happen around you but you can still choose how you react and respond in given situations. And that is, after all, the best approach, you can take.
This is part of a series of 20 posts on How I Ensure I Respect Your Time.