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It's no mistake that some of the most life-changing and trailblazing individuals in modern history were people of humility.
Mother Theresa, Reverend Billy Graham, and Nelson Mandela are a few great names that come to mind.
Though humility opened the door for their notoriety, these people used their influence and resources to benefit others.
Humble people don't chase the spotlight. In some cases, they live a modest lifestyle and seem to place the well-being of others above their own. On the outside, it looks like someone humble is missing out or selling themselves short.
But in reality, they are happier and healthier than their counterparts, who tend to be more selfish and prideful.
Humble people are more understanding and self-aware. They don’t feel the need to compare themselves to others and put others down to get ahead.
Instead, humble people desire to see everyone win, succeed, and be successful. They are not losing sleep, wearing themselves out trying to plot and plan how they will be better than anyone else.
When you’re humble, the only person you compete with is yourself, striving to be better today than you were yesterday. Let us take a deeper dive into humility. Then, look at some fantastic benefits humility brings as you practice it throughout your life.
What is Humility?
Humility is a modest perspective about one's level of significance in the world. It is the absence of arrogance and pride. And it’s the quality of being humble.
According to Biblical scripture, wisdom originates in humility, while pride only brings disgrace (Proverbs 11:2).
Humility is an excellent quality in leadership. “If leadership has a secret sauce, it may well be humility. A humble boss understands that there are things he doesn't know. He listens, not only to the other bigwigs in Davos but also to the kind of people who don't get invited, such as his customers.” —The Economist, 26 Jan. 2013
Being humble is knowing your strengths and weaknesses and being willing to lean on others who can shore up your weaknesses. It’s not being afraid to ask for help and having a teachable attitude toward every circumstance you experience.
Being Humble vs. Being Prideful
Humble people live with a broader view of life than a prideful person. Prideful people have a limited view because they only seek to make decisions that best benefit themselves while disregarding everyone else.
Even if it greatly oppresses or limits others. We have seen this character trait in many of our family members, co-workers, bosses, communities, and government leaders.
As a kid, remember how you had that one sibling or cousin who caused trouble when the adults were out of the room?
Then, when the adults returned, your prideful brother, sister, or cousin felt the need to report everything you and others did wrong to make themselves look good and responsible to the adults.
Maybe you've had co-workers who slacked off until the boss came around and then tried to take credit for your work.
Even trying to make the boss believe that you were the one slacking. The list can go on and on.
Being prideful is a great confusion starter. And builds false realities to gain its footing. For example, I used to lift weights regularly when I was younger.
Over time, I became prideful in the fact that I was very strong, especially at work. But it led to me trying to appear self-sufficient when I needed help the most.
I would tell others I had accomplished so much “ALL BY MYSELF.”
Ultimately, I started to suffer from a sore back and a weak shoulder. It was all based on the false reality I made for myself by saying I didn't need help.
This caused confusion because the supervisor allocated resources to other departments based on our abilities. But would have to make an area short-staffed to compensate for my shortcomings.
Humility, however, doesn't care how things get done or who gets the credit as long as it is done correctly. It’s being able to say I need help, I am weak, or I was wrong.
Pride is also a relationship killer. We see this when a spouse or partner feels they must have the last word in an argument, doesn’t listen to the opinions of the other, or makes choices that affect their significant other without even considering their feelings.
Humility is the secret recipe to a successful relationship. It's finding delight in your spouse's well-being, being open to your partner's ideas, and even deferring to your partner in areas in which they excel.
You choose to work together as a team and check in often to ensure your partner is okay. Lastly, being humble shows a willingness to make adjustments (compromise).
Humility has many incredible benefits. Let's look at a few.
7 Benefits of Practicing Humility Throughout Your Life
1. You’re Able to Build Strong Connections
Humility is being able to accept the need for relationships. Also, being humble is not being afraid to be vulnerable to others.
It builds a strong connection, especially when you aren't too proud to express your emotions. When you are humble, you won't hide your shortcomings but be open to expressing your feelings.
As a humble person, you can laugh at yourself, take a joke, and admit when you are wrong.
As a result of sharing your humanity, it creates connection, love, acceptance, and a sense of belonging. This practice strengthens bonds in families, the workplace, and every walk of life.
2. Humility Demonstrates Confidence
This one is contrary to what society may be saying. Many view humility as a lack of confidence.
But just because a person needs additional guidance or help doesn't make them less confident.
Humble people are confident in their own abilities and are more secure than those who are prideful.
So, you know you don’t need to make others look bad to look good. Humility eliminates the pressure to perform and try to exhibit skills outside of your level of competence.
3. Humility Creates Loyalty
When you are humble, people seem to gravitate toward you. And if you are a leader, they will follow you to the ends of the earth.
In business, humble leaders experience lower turnover among employees. It sets the tone for an excellent organizational culture.
Employees are happier and do all they can to guard their environment to keep the peace. Especially when referring others to work for their company.
The same can be said as we go out into our communities. When we demonstrate humility, we create loyal followings and garner support simply because people “like our attitudes better.”
When my friend Crystal sold insurance, customers were loyal to her because of the humility she modeled before them.
She never wanted anyone to feel inconvenienced when they had a problem and made them feel like part of a family. Many mentioned that other companies offered more affordable rates.
Still, they were loyal to her because of the humble culture of her office and the way she made them feel as customers.
Like a magnet, people are drawn to you when you are humble.
4. Humble People Take Feedback Well
When you're humble, you can take constructive criticism well. In fact, even if someone is trolling you online, you don't take it too seriously. Because when you are humble, you realize you aren't defined by your flaws and shortcomings.
In fact, you're open about them and are more than willing to take advice if it helps you become a better version of yourself. On the other hand, prideful people usually “know it all” and take critiques personally.
They are very unteachable, especially from someone with a subordinate position within an organization. This limits their personal and professional growth tremendously.
However, being humble equips you for advancement and opens the door to many great possibilities.
5. Humble People are Wiser People
Usually, humble people will take time to listen. A proverb says only a fool will answer a matter before hearing it out first.
When you hear a matter out, it demonstrates care and wisdom. It also creates an environment of inclusiveness and acceptance.
A wise person sees the benefit of what everyone around them has to offer and is accommodating toward them. Realizing that others make them better.
6. Humble People are More Thankful People
When you are humble, you are thankful for everything around you. No, it’s not settling for subpar conditions at work, in your community, or within a relationship.
But it’s being grateful for the process and the people surrounding you today.
Prideful individuals gripe and complain when inconvenienced or when their needs aren't met. But being humble in nature opens the door for gratitude.
Humility is sharing a simple “thank you” in appreciation of the contribution of another. And recognizing anything you have in life is not owed to you, but a gift.
“Humility is a blessing, as it allows us to reach beyond ourselves and appreciate the gifts others bring to the world, a natural source of gratitude.” – Living In Gratitude by Angeles Arrien.
7. Humility is Fulfilling and Gives You Greater Inner Peace
Nothing in life is more purposeful and fulfilling than serving others. It gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling on the inside. When you walk in humility, you feel like a good, complete, and wholesome person.
It's like a parent who gets their child a gift they wanted for Christmas. For the day, the parent takes pleasure in the joy they brought to their child.
It doesn't matter the financial sacrifice it took for the mom or dad to provide that gift. Nor is the parent reflecting on the stressful environment they had to work in to make it happen.
All that matters and fills them full of joy, peace, and fulfillment is seeing the smile on the face of their little one.
Humility fills you up every time you serve others, leaving them in a better place than when you found them. Nothing is better than that.
Final Thoughts on the Benefits of Humility
“If you could be anything in the world, be humble.” – Stephen Andra. Humility unlocks an endless world of possibilities and only has an upside and no downside. Take the humble approach in a world that values pride as a way to get ahead in the rat race of life.
When you are humble, you may feel like an arrow being pulled back on a bow for the moment.
You will be launched into new areas of life with promotions, loyal supporters, and accolades far more than you ever imagined.
So, don't stop being vulnerable, teachable, and leaning on others. It may be part of the tension you feel now, but it's about to release you into the greatest moments of your success.
And if you're looking for more articles on how to improve yourself be sure to check out these blog posts:
- How to Journal for Your Self-Improvement (with Examples)
- 9 Techniques to Improve Your Empathic Listening Skills
- How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others: A Simple Guide