A Lesson In Humility

In the world of self confidence and self obsession, its hard to find humility and gratitude. As is appears, humility is now deemed a virtue of the weak. Successful people know their worth. They know that they are special. And they know that people should agree with these sentiments. Why in the world would they be humble? Humility means leveling yourself with others whereas self confidence comes from a higher perception of the self. Right?

Well… yes, it is more complicated than that. Yes, that is blatant generalization. And yes, I am mostly correct in my assessment. I have (believe it or not), thought of both sides of the argument and I realize (believe it or not) that there remains many a book’s worth of material to cover before forming an opinion on the threads that create, sustain and rule the human society. 

But bear with me. I promise I have a point.

I was speaking to an intellectual (lets call him Bob) on another individual (lets call him Tom- yes I am THAT creative). 

Anyway, heres the conversation:

‘You know Shilpa, he just doesn’t understand his worth. His simplicity and humility really become his shackles when it comes to doing good business. Do you know what I mean?’
‘Of course’ Bob frowns as he thinks of his next profound statement,’being a good businessman means taking care of people that work for you but you have to take charge and really tell them like it is. They have to know who’s boss. They have to know you’re confident in the way you handle things.’
‘The worst problem is that no one takes him seriously because he’s so nice’
‘Um..well I -‘
‘You’re young but when you get to my level of experience, you know that sometimes you have to be a taskmaster’
I nodded my head, obviously I wasn’t going to get a word in.
‘Oh, I have to go, nice talking to you…’ Bob said as he walked away.

So when did being nice and humble become shackles? When did sympathy become limiting?

I might be ‘young’ and maybe ‘naive’ but I know that history has always respected kind and humble leaders. 

Or was that just in my head or in the stories I read? ❤


  1. In my understanding and experience, humility and humbleness are higher level virtues but to reach there you have to pass through the hard work self-confidence level. Hindi Poet Suryakant Tripathi captured it well (in practical terms), that forgiveness suits only to poisonous snake. Mahatma Gandhi said same—that non-violence is not a tool for weak-of-hearts.


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