"The path to wisdom is paved with humility."
To be humble in our everyday interactions can be the ultimate test for our egos. There are times we feel wronged, mistreated or ignored. It can do a number on us and affect our sense of wellbeing if we allow it to. We may choose to get upset and potentially overreact. We may even allow it to ruin the rest of our day if we can't seem to let it go. Taking the high road in any unpleasant situation we find ourselves in can be a pride swallowing experience that can help us to not take everything so seriously.
I am not referring to situations where our safety or health is compromised. We must stand up for ourselves when we feel like we are in a dangerous situation, whether it involves emotional or physical abuse. I am referring to moments where we get defensive or cold because life did not go our way. We may get into it with a coworker because we disagree on something, or we argue with a loved one because our needs are not being met. We may even end up regretting how we reacted because we realize we still need to get along with that coworker to get our work done, or we still love that person and value our relationship with them.
In order to avoid those regrets where we are forced to acknowledge our missteps in the situation, we can learn to take a more humble approach. I have referred to having the ability to respond to situations, instead of overreacting to them. I call it under reacting. This is where we can use patience to develop a more calculated response, where we not only consider the facts, we also consider the repercussions of our actions. We also allow our emotions to settle down in the process. I found the longer I take to respond, the less I allow my emotions to get in the way. By doing this, I respond to the facts, instead of overreacting to my emotions.
Taking a humble approach may not feel right in the moment, but it can end up saving us more turmoil in the future. We can focus on preventing unnecessary blowups and avoid the need to repair the damage caused by our reactions. Taming our ego can do wonders for our personal and professional relationships. It involves being more mindful and tapping into the compassion that resides inside each of us. It may sting on the front end, but the more we do it, the more we realize and reap the benefits.