My wife and I were exchanging words of appreciation for each other on our 18th anniversary a few weeks ago. I was honored and blown away when she said that the thing she appreciated most about me was my humility. Walking in integrity, humility, and generosity are key character values for my life and to hear that in some way humility has been actualized in my heart was really meaningful.
Liberating leaders operate from a base of humility.
Humility is a tough concept. Did I just nullify my humility because I told you that story? Can one actually even say “my humility”? Am I actually humble or is it better to say I am growing in humility? (Hint: I prefer the latter).
I’ve detected a difference between humility and pseudo-humility. Since humility is an absolute essential for liberating leaders, it is important to detect genuine humility. See if this list helps and feel free to add more contrasts in the comment section;
- I receive compliments
- I say “thank you”
- I focus on expanding capacity in others
- I am generous with coaching and compliments
- I know the specific character & competency areas of my team because I am perceptive of where they are at.
- I am secure enough to apologize
- I celebrate that some of my advancements have come through the demonstration of trust and relevance.
- I listen and ask many questions.
- I pursue feedback about my affect on others
- I deflect compliments
- I say “Oh, well, it wasn’t me”
- I focus on how others can help me win
- I give occasional compliments when others are discouraged
- I don’t really know where my team needs to grow because I am more focused on my own development
- I am insecure enough to not admit when I have made a mistake
- I am frustrated. I self-promote and wonder why I am not getting ahead
- I talk to display my knowledge.
- I am easily offended when others point out challenging areas in my life.
In my next post I’ll talk about ways to cultivate genuine humility.