Arrogance. A word that everyone tries to avoid but many fail to do so.
A common form of arrogance is when a person makes the conversation all about them while the opposite form of arrogance is when one lowers their self-esteem to shift all the attention to themselves.
I recently met a client of mine for the first time. During this meeting, I saw a beautiful painting behind her and the beauty of the painting was all that I could think of. In our conversation she said that she was unsure of her talent when it came to art and that she was worried that no one would purchase her art. I asked her if she painted the painting on her wall and she replied that she did paint the painting.
My client played small by lowering her self-esteem to the point where she acted like she did not have a talent or gift for art. She was not fully embracing her potential to create amazing things for this world. She had this fear of getting cut down, a fear of judgment, a fear of what people are going to think, a fear of taking a risk and a fear of failure. She was being arrogant.
People often confuse lowering one’s self-esteem as humility instead of arrogance. Instead of asking people to look at you, ask yourself instead “What am I here to create in the world?”, or “What is my purpose here?”, or “What gifts have I received from God that I am not using?”
For my client to step into humility, she had to take action. She had to take the next step, start her own business, sell her art and create an impact in the world with her beautiful creations.
If I were to become the biggest executive coach in the world where, instead of spreading a positive impact to the world, I made myself the main topic and only took actions that avoided the judgement of others, avoided getting hurt or looking a bit silly, this would be arrogance on my part.
My journey as an executive coach began in Perth, Australia, but I don’t want to stop at Perth. I want to reach the rest of Australia and then the rest of the world because I know that coaching impacts lives. My purpose is to serve people. This doesn’t make me arrogant – it’s true humility because it’s not about me, it’s about the impact on the people I serve.
With all of these laid out, here are some healthy habits that we could all do more of to avoid coming off as arrogant:
Do not always make the conversation about yourself.
Do not pretend that you lack talent by lowering your self esteem, instead take action and shift your focus to how to grow your talent and by finding ways of making the gap smaller between where you are and where you want to be in life.
Use your God-given talent to create exceptional things in this world.
Do something to serve people or to serve God or to serve whatever purpose that creates a positive impact on the world.
Applying these steps in your everyday life will not only prevent you from coming off as arrogant but these steps will introduce the habit of humility as you use your God given talent to make the world a better place. Always remember that lowering one’s self-esteem is not being humble but rather a form of arrogance, while taking action to improve one’s world, on the other hand, is humility.