Humility: the acceptance of our flawed self
Intoday’s culture the children are often taught that they are perfect, they always winners and they can never do wrong. Parents are constantly coddling and protecting their self-esteem. They guard their children from any experiences of negativity, hardship, or failure. They teach their children that as long as they ‘be themselves’ then they deserve to be rewarded for it unconditionally.
As a result, we grow up with the belief that ‘’I deserve all the happiness and success in the world exactly as I am. And anyone that denies me this thing is wrong. ‘’ we have become self-centered, egoistical, and entitled. We begin to believe that we deserve everything for nothing, because were never put in work to earn something ourselves.
Self-esteem isn’t necessarily the best force that drives good character even though our society tends to highly emphasise it. Instead what’s most important today is to cultivate humility and modesty. As painful as it can be, we need to acknowledge our weakness and limitations more often. We need to reinstitute the concept of a ‘’flawed self’- a self that is hypocritical, broken and highly prone to being wrong and making mistakes.
It’s only when we accept this flawed self that we can truly embark on self-improvement and the build- ing of good character. But if we always pretend we can do no wrong then we will never change or grow as individuals. Humility doesn’t always come naturally to people. If anything, we often wired to be over- confident in ourselves. We think were smarter than we really are. We think we better than we really are. And we think us morally superior than we really are. Humility helps curb this never ending over confidence.
What humility teaches us?
You are not perfect – I am not perfect, I’ve made mistakes in the past and I will make mistakes in the future. There will always be some things you want to change about yourself. You are never an ending project.
You don’t know everything-I’m not as smart as I think I am. I often overestimate how much I know about a particular subject, and it’s important for me to accept the wisdom of ignorance.
Your feelings don’t always serve me- when you accept my flawed self, you accept that sometimes I need to fight against your natural desires and impulses when they don’t serve your best interest. Your emotions can sometimes misguide you.
Accept your weakness- like everyone else, we have both strengths and weaknesses, ‘I only make myself more susceptible to give into them and repeat them’. I need to accept my weaknesses before I can begin to work on them.
It’s okay to seek help outside yourself - when we accept our flaws and limitations, I recognise that sometimes I need to seek help outside to get past difficult times in my life. You shouldn’t feel ashamed when you need to ask another person for help or assistance.