Arun is Bringing You...Your Daily Remedy

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Show Humility, But Don't Be Humble

My recent open mic event got me thinking: "How did I manage to do so well, when, in my practice sessions, I was only so-so?"

In fact, this has been sort of a running theme for me.

When I used to "actively" play cello, I hated practicing. I used to practice for like 15 minutes before my lesson just so I wouldn't get in trouble. The best though was when, after playing a few exercises or a song I was supposed to be working on, she would exclaim, "Wow, Arun! I can really tell you've been practicing!"

I'm a con artist, I know.

Then, when it came time for me to play in front of an audience, despite being totally nervous, I usually had one of my best performances!

So back to my original thought of "How did I manage to perform well?" I think I've figured in out.

Supreme Confidence.

Quite honestly though, most people wouldn't know it.

I know what you're thinking. "Common Arun! You're the biggest ego-maniac I know!"

True, but other than on my blog, or when I trash talking around my friends, I generally try to act VERY humble. When people ask me if I play music, I usually just tell them that I "dabble here and there." If they ask me if I'm good at sports, I usually just say "I can hold my own."

All the while though, on the inside I feel like I can beat anyone. When people complemented me on my open mic, I was very gracious, so much so that I think people thought I was surprised that I played well.

In reality, I expected to play well and would have been disappointed by anything less.

Having such a supremely confident attitude is important. I don't think you can't be a lifelong winner without truly believing you are going to succeed in everything you do. But, if you act like the expert on every issue, people will loathe you.

Example: I suck at bowling. But, if I somehow ended up in a "bowling dual to the death," I know I would step it up and win. I have no doubt. And if I happen to be with friends, obviously I'll let loose a flurry of verbal barbs.

That's not to say that I WOULD win, but I'd put my money on me :)

I think most people would describe me as confident, and my good friends would say I'm cocky. As soon as you start being described as arrogant though, that's when people start disliking you. That's why it's so important to SHOW HUMILITY! That way you can be successful AND people will like you.

Be gracious when people praise you, don't act like the supreme expert on anything (even if you are!), and let your actions speak for themselves. They will as long as YOU KNOW that you're the best.

Watch an interview with Tiger Woods or Pete Sampras. They're always pretty humble. Confident? Yes. Arrogant? No. You'd never know that they were the best to ever play the sport by talking to them. They're successful AND most of us like them.

BUT, do you think they ever even contemplate losing or being worse than someone else? Never.

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