When we take pride in our accomplishments, we may get mixed up and feel we are on the edge of arrogant behavior.
And it’s possible that we are. But there’s a difference between identifying with ego, which needs to feel praised or right, and taking pride in our work.
There is also a difference between being proud of superficial qualities and material gains, and having self-respect and being self-assured.
Just because we have a sense of pride, doesn’t mean we’ve lost track of our ego or that we are getting “a big head.” We can take pride and remain humble.
Pride Says, “I am Fortunate.”
- I am lucky to have these wonderful people in my life.
- How fortunate I am to have this healthy body, this strong mind.
- I am blessed to be able to exist in and create an environment I love.
Ego Says, “I’m So Good/This is Mine.”
- Look how well I raised my children.
- I need you to notice my good looks and my smarts.
- Let me show you how my efforts resulted in luxury and abundance.
Self-Respect Says, “This is My Truth.”
- My people mean so much to me and I care for them.
- My physical and mental health deserve my attention.
- My surroundings are a reflection of my values and joy.
You see, you could live in a tiny, old and broken space and still have self-respect.
You would wash your dish and cherish your book and mind your candle. You would be thrilled to visit with friends in the park.
And it would be fair for you to take pride in how you groom yourself, how you tend to the volunteer activities at church, how you make delicious bread.
You could also cross the line into arrogance. When you place your bread above his soup.
Or claim your childrens’ successes as your own.
Or flaunt your appearance or your knowledge to attract attention to yourself.
We are all allowed to show our stuff. We shouldn’t hide our best qualities, our gifts, or our most treasured blessings!
You have permission to take pride in all you do, and know, and have. It’s a fortunate life indeed.
When you know that much, your ego won’t feel threatened or small, so it won’t need to muscle its way into your self-respect.
Shine a light on all you love and be grateful you know it. And know it might change, grow, diminish or leave. It’s alright–you are already worthwhile.
You will always have something valuable to share with the world.
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