Many people confuse confidence with arrogance. Growing up in a shame-based family as I did, the message I received was that I should downplay my successes and connect with others over my insecurities. It wasn’t until I got older that I realized I wasn’t doing the world any good by shrinking from the truth. Marianne Williamson makes this point beautifully in this quote below that is sometimes inaccurately attributed to Nelson Mandela:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Despite the wonderful core idea from Williamson’s quote above, when you shine there will be some insecure or undifferentiated people around you that will attempt to bring you down because of envy. Unfortunately, envy fuels a lot of human behavior. But don’t let that dissuade you. Keep shining, for yourself and for humanity. And remember that humility is truth as this author reminds us in this excellent blog I found today. This blog has a religious focus but the message is universal.
“Humility is simply truth. And to live in the truth means you never deny the gifts in yourself and also you never deny the gifts in others. This is what it takes to live in ‘right order’. If we practiced this, the world would live in right order. The world itself would be in peace if there were true humility. Humility respects and humility doesn’t try to be what it is not. When we see that, we find freedom.” Find the full blog here: http://stwalburga.blogspot.com/2009/05/humility-is-truth.html