This rule, I consider to be another important one, and while I no longer recall the exact quote, it was written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle for one of the Sherlock Holmes adventures.
However it didn’t make it to the codex until years later…
When we are little, we are often told how we must not be arrogant, conceited, etc. And while I sort of agree, I find there’s also a less told side where an excess of modesty can be even worse.
See, one of my first formal jobs I was hired along with another guy, he didn’t have a second language, but when “we” translated some manuals, he was the one who ran with our boss to show him “our” work.
He also had next to zero knowledge about technology, but when “we” fixed some computers and later built some equipment; he was again the one to present “our” work.
Back then I was much more of a good person, if you want to call it that, so I didn’t mind, in fact, I was glad for him when he was the one to be promoted , even after our employer quoted those sort of situations as the reasons for his promotion.
As the years passed, I saw this thing repeating itself, not just with me but also with a couple of other guys, and that’s how I noticed they had a thing in common: modesty.
See, by definition, modesty would be “the quality or state of being unassuming or moderate in the estimation of one’s abilities.” However, it seems that the meaning it has nowadays is more akin to “Downplay yourself so others won’t feel left out”. However, the problem here is that, if you feel less because someone else can do something you can’t, the problem does not lie in anyone but yourself.
The thing is, if you’ve worked hard in order to attain something, whether it is material, knowledge, a skill, a language, or any other thing, who has the right to tell you not to show it off?
In fact, the world has been shaped by people who show off what they’ve got.
Bruce Lee said: “As you think, so shall you become”. And he was right, our minds are that powerful, and they do not understand about modesty.
A long time ago, when I was a younger martial artist, I was pretty good, I knew it, however, whenever there was a competition, I just couldn’t perform, I was stuck between the “I’m not that good” and “Don’t want my opponent to feel bad”, and while I was there, I kept losing and I kept being a barely decent fighter.
It wasn’t until years later when I came to realize this rule, and I realized that, if I was to make something out of my skill sets, I had to actually put them to use, and this required me to go out to the world and say “Hey all, I can do this and that!”, so as to not make this post longer, I’ll just say that from that point onward, I started getting promoted at work, I started winning fights and even ended up consulting for a couple of security forces.
This rule is an invitation to never be a “barely decent” anything! If you know what you are worth, if you know what you deserve then don’t be afraid to go out into the world and claim it.
*A small disclaimer though, keep your feet on the ground, there’s a fine line between not being unnecessarily modest and overselling yourself, so don’t claim something you are not, and always deliver what you promise, we will talk more about this later.
That’s it for this post; let me know what you think and what life rules you’ve found in your path! You can leave a comment below or send me a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know your thoughts or what you’d like to see posted in the future! Thanks for reading and see you next post!!