Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everyone will respect you. Lao Tzu

Last night at Toastmasters it was election night and the word of the day was reluctant. Aren’t we reluctant to step up sometimes? People lead busy lives and often the highest most responsible positions in clubs are the ones we could easily get voted into and the smaller positions we might have to fight for.

Could it be possible that there is less competition at the top than we think? What makes people leaders? Is it a gift for leadership, is it a willingness, is it not knowing any better? It is easy to start our own company; sometimes it is easier to start our own company than get a job at someone else’s. Building a successful company is not the easy part, registering a business and calling our self “President” is easy.

We sometimes look at the candidates we have to choose from in leadership. Where are all the good choices we ask our self? They didn’t step up, and we are left to choose between who did. When we look at some of the great candidates that have been taken down by the media we might begin to understand why more people don’t stand up for such scrutiny.

We ended up with what I believe will be a great executive team even though many of the positions were won by acclamation. As one of the ballots counters my job was easier than it should have been.

Reluctance has been a big part of my life. I was reluctant to hang up my paintings in my own home until five years ago. I reluctantly started putting them on my blog when I ran out of flowers to photograph and was using stock photos instead. When I read some of the horror stories that can happen by using other peoples photos, even when we are told they are free to use, we aren’t always told the truth. It seemed a better practice to use my own photos or ones I have permission to use from people I know.

We hide our light under a bushel when we conceal our talents and abilities. Sometimes people hide their talents as a means of modesty or false modesty. Am I the only one that wonders what is bragging, and what is false modesty?

Humble means “modest, without an excess of pride.” A person who brags about being humble may have too much pride in being humble to actually be humble. We might say, “I’m just a humble person in search of…” We can probably imagine certain people saying this.

Humility is the solid foundation of all virtues. Confucius

When we think of humility we often think it is not thinking very much of our self. What if it’s more about a proper assessment or accurate assessment of our self, who we are, our character, skills, talents, gifts, grace, weaknesses, and accomplishments? Accepting this with gratitude and grace and being the best we can be. What if knowing our own limits, our strengths and weakness, morally or in all other ways is actually humility. That knowing our self and accepting ourselves, our good parts, bad parts, warts and all is actually humility. Not pretending we aren’t good enough, or actually thinking we aren’t good enough, it isn’t good to love other people but not ourselves. Who does that serve?

Humble people are thought to have the following traits.

They focus their energy on others.

Humble people tend to reflect inwardly, but focus their energy on other people. They put other people ahead of themselves. They have a real interest in others and their contribution to the world. They are not paralyzed by failure because they don’t feel they have to be perfect, this gives them the courage to try new things, to take new risks.

They are conscientious.

Humble people help out friends, are charitable and generous toward other people.

Their moral compass guides their decision making.

Humble people think about their values when they make a choice. They accept things with grace and stand by their decisions.

They see happiness as a journey.

We tend to achieve happiness when we aren’t actually pursuing it. When we aren’t only focused on ourselves, but giving to others is when we often find our passion, purpose, and meaning.

They excel as leaders.

Humble leaders give credit where it is due.

They know good things lie ahead – and they’re okay waiting for them.

When we live on the side of modesty, we are genuinely thankful for the opportunities and accolades we receive.

They have strong relationships.

Modesty and genuine graciousness towards others significantly strengthen social bonds.

Can we live our life, accepting ourselves how we are, own our talents, strengths, failures, and share our gifts with the world?

Always be a first-rate version of yourself and not a second rate version of someone else. Judy Garland

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, humility, and love.

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Humility: The Secret Ingredient of Success Hardcover – Oct 1 2016

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