Tag: Pride

The value of pride

I take a lot of pride in being myself. I’m comfortable with who I am. James McAvoy

At various points in time, it is quite possible that an individual would have wished to be someone else, ideally his/ her role model or latest super actor or sports personality. Typically our daydreams of being some else begins in childhood with us taking a great liking to some hero / heroine of our favorite comics/ books. At adolescence one graduates to dreaming of being a hero/ heroine of movies and before long one is besotted by images of being the current celebrity. Typically, it is the fame, the adulation; the celebrity status and power that we imagine others to be having that makes us pine to don their avatar.

Yet when we cut back to reality, we find that we do appreciate our personal self, albeit with hope that we can make some key changes that will make us special. It is this pride that we take in our being what we are that spurs us on live life with hope, faith and determination. No one is perfect but that may not be a consolation for someone keen to overcome a perceived personal limitation. Someone short may pine to be taller; people who are lean would love to have a better physique; those who are intelligent may crave to be more outgoing and those who are extroverts may be hoping that their deeper insecurities are never revealed. While our perceived limitations could be a reality using it as an excuse not to fulfill our potential would be hari-kari.

To accept one’s self in totality one must learn to appreciate the blessings we are fortunate to have, make sincere efforts to overcome our inadequacies and limitations while simultaneously taking pride in the individual that we are. Here are 4 tips to help you take pride in the individual that you are:

Be positive – Try and see the silver lining. No matter what the situation change is a constant and it is in change that fresh hopes, new beginnings and greater opportunities abound. Your individuality will always have a chance to be showcased, appreciated and recognized. Making affirmative suggestions is another way to be positive. This can be done by positive self talk, positive visualization and keeping in the company of those who encourage, motivate and inspire you. E.g. You are to make your first major presentation and you are nervous. You can tell yourself that you have prepared well and visualize the confident manner you will make the presentation and even imagine the applause you will get. You can be sure that you will soon be oozing with confidence.

Leverage strengths – Give up the tendency to brood over what you hate, dislike or cannot change. Instead focus on your strengths and utilize it to the best of your abilities. One way to identify your strengths is to listen to the positive feedback and appreciation that you receive.  E.g. If diligence is your strength be diligent in whatever you do and don’t bother if you are not too creative or flamboyant.

Work on personal change –Many a time there could be limitations that can be rectified with a little help from others or by making some concentrated effort. Identify these areas of concern that needs a makeover and proactively go about making those personal improvements. E.g. you are shy and afraid of public speaking. If you are in a job that requires you to be more bold and visible it is obvious that you have to attend some public speaking classes at the earliest.

Don’t get bogged down by criticism – Criticism often deflates us, irritates us and demotivates us. Succumbing to criticism erodes our confidence, triggers negative emotions and punctures our ego. Our pride takes a tremendous beating then. If on the other hand, one can see criticism as helpful hints to guide us to the path of success, we would learn from it, ignore it if untrue and climb up the ladder of success by overcoming each criticism directed us it. E.g. You are a passionate sports person but are told that you have the tactical acumen but not the physical ability to become an extraordinary sports person. Use the criticism to change tracks from being a sports man to becoming a coach or sports administrator and still be actively involved in your passion.

Remember: Show class, have pride, and display character. If you do, winning takes care of itself. Paul Bryant

Try this:

  1. Write down your average monthly budget for expenses. Ensure your write down that figure now. Read further only if you have written down that figure. Are sure it is a realistic estimate? Recalculate that figure if you have to but write down that figure now. Now divide the figure by 2. The resultant figure should now be your monthly budget for the next 3 months. Try living on that budget for the next 3 months and then answer the following questions
  • Did you think it was acceptable challenge when you began the task?
  • Was it easy to live on that budget?
  • What was most difficult to manage on that budget?
  • What was easiest to give up in order to live on that budget?
  • Did you get frustrated attempting the challenge?
  • How did you motivate yourself to meet the challenge? 
  1. Choose one activity that you have never tried before and try to do it within a week
  • Make a couple of origami items
  • Learn 5 different types of knots that can be tied
  • Rustle up a dessert that involves baking and decorating
  • Physically handle an animal other than a cat or dog

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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Ego is to the true self what a flashlight is to a spotlight. John Bradshaw

Every man must have an ego, for it is the ego that provides the spark to ignite ones potential. It is therefore natural that as we progress in life, we measure our progress in terms of achievements, successes, use the monetary barometer and the material possessions to satisfy our ego that we are someone. In this pursuit, other yardsticks more difficult to quantify but vital for an ideal life, like good health, family bonding, being a socially aware person etc. are put on the backburner. This naturally makes our self understanding rather lopsided and skewed, leading to very distorted view about our own self. We then see ourselves as spotlights focusing the light on ourselves, whereas the world at large sees us as flashlights that light up the way for sometime in the dark.

To understand our own limitations and inflated ego, simply stand in front of a full length mirror and try to appreciate yourself from head to toe. Now pick out your physical strengths and then focus on areas of improvement on your own physique. Notice how you rationalize the areas of improvement since you are not ready to either accept it easily nor work towards changing it.  It could be being overweight, having a bad posture, poor grooming or simply a negative disposition. The ego is at work overtime to help you see virtue in your weakness. E.g. Some people brush aside their bulging belly as a sign of prosperity or justify their dressing sense as being cool.

In reality any measure of success we achieve is an ego booster and that is perfectly fine. The trouble starts when we start multiplying our success instead of merely adding them up. The multiplier effect is as potent as putting aviation fuel in our car for while there may be a brief spurt in the speed of the car, the engine would simply burn out even before we have begun to enjoy the ride. An inflated ego blinds us to reality, we court danger with alacrity and our morals and conscience often take a back seat. The fall of the once high and mighty, their condemnation to ignominy and obscurity should serve as a warning lest we fall prey to the same illness that plagued them. We need to watch out, before the very ego that sparks our potential turns into a raging fire that consumes us.

Remember: “Ego has a voracious appetite, the more you feed it, the hungrier it gets.” Nathaniel Bronner Jr.

Try these:

  1. If and when you get a chance, do visit a show or exhibition where you can look at the distorting mirrors. It will be both enjoyable and illuminating. While enjoying the varied looks that the images on the mirror reflect pause and think about how your ego maybe distorting your image in the eyes of others. E.g. Whilst you might think of yourself as an open person, your colleagues might view you as a proud, self opinionated person.
  2. Do read the post on Exaggerated Grandiose Opinion  dated 16th March 2010 in our weekly blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com