What if everything you’ve been taught about your ego (bad!) and humility (good!) are wrong?
Humility is learned.
Don’t believe me?
Think back to your childhood. Every time you amazed yourself with your capacity to go beyond your expectations, you gleefully gave yourself a high-five before you proudly showed off what you did anyone who would listen.
“Mom, look what I made!”
“I got an ‘A+’ on my exam!”
“I did it, Daddy!”
To which, the person who you boasted to gave you an affirmation of, “Excellent job! Keep it up! You should be so proud of yourself!”
You. Should. Be. So. Proud. Of. Yourself.
So when did this idea of self-importance switch to this need to be modest and humble?
For me, it was in my late teens. I was told I was confident, not conceited during my high school years (shhh, it’s the same thing). I had good grades. Solid friends in and out of school. Class salutatorian. Lots of community involvement. Sang in the choir. Enjoyed going to church.
After graduating and moving to Florida for school and working at the same time, I received feedback to remove my accomplishments from my resume and conversations with colleagues to make me more “palatable”; to make me more “low-key”.
So I started dimming my light. Muting my voice.
Couldn’t mention that I graduated summa cum laude.
That I had a successful business.
How to Embrace Your Ego
Friends, it is time to ditch humility and it’s derivatives, like humiliation. Throw out the sister words too like, low-key, passable, modest, self-deprecating, and adequate.
Embrace the family of conceit, which says you are self-important, self-congratulatory, self-satisfied, self-centered, egocentric, and most importantly, self-authorized.
Sounds scary, doesn’t it?
How do you switch off a lifetime of humble-programming?
Let’s take gratitude journaling, for instance. This is the practice of appreciating what others have done for you. What if we switched the appreciations to yourself and write about what you have done for others.
Try this for one week:
Heap praise on yourself each day focusing on something you did.
I am so proud of how impactful my talk was today. I delivered it flawlessly and I spoke from the heart. I am an amazing communicator. I know when I’m in my glow zone, I am flawless!
Trust me, before you’re even finished writing your self-praise, you will feel your energy shift positively. You’ll feel radiant and invincible.
Besides, do we really need to look for external validation to confirm what we know innately? You already know how exceptional you are.
Embrace your ego. Shine your light.
Laura Borland is the author of Glum to Glad: 40-Day Mind Transformations™ – an evidence journal series designed to help people overcome major life events, and her newest book, Gladversity. Find free journaling ideas on her website www.glumtoglad.com.