Recently A gentleman whom I hold in a relatively good esteem made a passing comment on me “That I give myself too much Credit . To say the least that was a profound statement. It intrigued me what was that provoked the gentleman to fire such a salvo at me. Interestingly I have had known this gentleman for ages and in my early years he was some sort of a minor influence on me. As years went by we rarely kept in touch but kept talking through the relative ups and downs of life. We rarely used to cross each other’s path and used to maintain a healthy respect towards each other from a distance. The social media which often reduces the distance between people and is known to foster continuous communication actually produces the counter affect because what the gentleman said was in reference to my articulation in a social media forum which he was also a part of. Interestingly the same gentleman gave a boost to my Ego saying that the type of information which I posted on the social media forum were not like the status equated to junk bonds. So what changed the gentleman’s perception so rapidly? As long as the gentleman was not effected personally by the content I posted in the Social forum he had no reservations about the content posted by me. However when he felt that my comments on the forum were directly encroaching with his articulations he felt a bit peeved and fought a proxy war with me and ultimately culminated in the above Profound Statement. “You give yourself too much Credit”
I have to give the gentleman credit as it kept me thinking about the profound statement. What did he mean? Did he mean I had an Ego? Or did it mean I lacked Humility. Both the two sides of a same coin. But I thought of the coin differently like a Chocolate Coin Candy where the outer wrappers were both Ego and Humility and what lies inside the real chocolate was somewhere between Ego and Humility which I call Healthy Ego. What I mean to say is we are all a combined package. We all have Ego, Humility and a Healthy Ego. If you can conceal Your Ego and show humility and pad it up with A bit of Healthy Ego you are recognized as a true gentleman but if you conceal your humility and Show Healthy Ego leaning towards the real Ego you are labeled “Egoistic” and giving too much credit to yourself. Let’s take this discussion a Notch Higher and explore the World Of Ego, Humility and the different dimensions of Humility. I admit myself not being an expert take a little aid form the vast literature available on the internet.
What is Humility ?
• Relational humility is behavior within a particular relationship that demonstrates that the humble person has an accurate perception of the evaluation himself or herself, not thinking too much or too little of oneself—in that relationship.
• Humility requires other-orientation that considers the welfare of the other at least as much as one’s own welfare thus engendering trust in others.
• Humility is most likely observable in conditions when the ego is strained, such as during conflict or recognition for achievement. This is similar to most virtues, like compassion, which doesn’t show up until someone’s neediness challenges one to help.
After having understood What Humility is Humility must be exercised when the ego is strained, and that requires self-control. The ego is likely to be strained in at least four general situations: when one is challenged in a conflict, insecure, recognized for achievement, and negotiating relative contribution for some accomplishment. In each, one is threatened and needs to reassert one’s strengths to bolster the ego, is dealing with others’ ego-bolstering attention, or is receiving recognition that stimulates pride and preening. In fact, for humility to be clearly visible, the ego strain must be felt. Similar to other virtues, like courage that is evident only in the face of fear and not detectable in normal circumstances, humility is rarely detectable when one is not experiencing a challenge to the self-esteem or public esteem.
In each case, people are tempted to not be humble when they identify with an object—a person, theory, team, organization, country, ideology, religion, or profession .We invest in and identify with that object. When our identity is threatened by direct challenge to ourselves or challenge to the identified object, we rise to the challenge. We might defend our investment in our identity. If that defense is at the cost of others’ welfare, humility is sacrificed. Therein is the essence of humility. It is other-oriented (protecting the welfare of others) while not denying self-protection. It is certainly fine to protect oneself, but not at the expense of others.
Two me the above two passages explain the essence of humility and Ego in a Nut Shell. The more I read the above two passages I pay my tribute to the author who penned the above two wonderful passages which bare out the essentials of the twins Ego and Humility. I end this article dedicating it to the Gentleman who made the profound comment “ You take too much Credit”