Humility is knowing you are exceptional, yet accepting there are others who are more exceptional than you.

People seem to think being humble is putting yourself down; that true humility means you cannot find yourself incredible. But I think the greatest humility is the one that reckons its own accomplishments without basking in them like they were the light of the sun. I think the truly humble is great and grateful. Why? Because to be humble you must be great. Otherwise, you would just be sincere and honest about the fact that you are merely normal. That, in my humble (wink, wink) opinion, does not require humility.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines humility as: “the quality or state of being humble.” And of course, that cleared it up for all of us. (Insert cheesy sitcom laughter here.) I keep looking. The definition of humble doesn’t help much either.

1: not proud or haughty : not arrogant or assertive
2: reflecting, expressing, or offered in a spirit of deference or submission <a humble apology>
3a : ranking low in a hierarchy or scale : insignificantunpretentious
b : not costly or luxurious <a humble contraption>

I look up “proud.” It says: having or displaying excessive self-esteem. I think the key word here is excessive. Thinking you are the greatest shit that ever lived and that nobody can ever surpass you seems a bit excessive to me. Don’t you think?

So the next time someone praises your work or art or whatever; don’t put it down. Don’t say: “Yeah, I know.”  Just say thank you.


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