Pride: good & bad?

America appears more prideful than I remember growing up.  While everyone takes pride in their family, their work, and their hobbies or free time, how does this stack up to the measurement of “Pride”?

When we boast about an accomplishment is that prideful?  We do it because it makes us “Feel” good. It makes us feel good because we seek recognition and a great way to be recognized is to do something another will acknowledge…or that we can acknowledge.

Have you ever noticed that upon meeting a business person how quickly the conversation leaps to “I’ve done this or that”?  It’s like the other person is screaming for recognition and we supply the opportunity with something like, “what do you do”?

Mother Theresa might have said in response to what do you do “I serve others”.  But that does not promote enough self value for most of us.  We, who are low in self esteem, usually can’t wait to discuss the few things we have done that may be impressive enough to have the other person say “Wow”.  And that makes us feel good…even if we embellish our efforts in the telling of our exploits.

Why?  Why is being “accomplished” so pervasive today.  My daddy would never boast of his efforts or results.  From my father in law you will be hard pressed to determine the sweeping affect of his tenure as a Court of Appeals Judge from a conversation with him.  Of course both these men had pride in themselves, but they CHOSE not to tarnish a conversation about their accomplishments, as they were more interested in you.

Interested in you … not interested in making themselves look good?  What is going on here. Here is their advice:

1. Be quick to listen, slow to speak, slower to anger

2. Develop a relationship with the person you are conversing with…do not merely pause to “take a picture” with them.

So how do you develop a relationship in a 5 minute conversation?  Try this: put yourself in their shoes and smile, don’t be direct in your questions – rather be accommodating trying to start a conversation rather than show off how much you know, listen intently and don’t interrupt (as if you want to better understand and show off that you are listening), draw them out because you care about them, and thank them for talking with you.

What you will learn in 5 minutes will be amazing.  Have some fun, be open, and don’t have an agenda!

www.about.me/davethorpe

 

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