This thought has been on my mind a lot over the last couple of weeks. Now, keep in mind that there are broke arrogant people. There are ugly arrogant people. There are fake humble people. Then there are also people who are arrogant and you can kind of understand why they may be arrogant.
In my mind, there’s no excuse for arrogance. Don’t confuse confidence with arrogance. It’s fine to know who you are and what you bring to the table, that’s confidence. Arrogance is when you look down on people and you treat them less-than. Arrogance is when you feel you’re too special to be treated like everyone else.
I’ve had some experiences recently that allowed me the opportunity to exercise humility. I went to a speaking engagement recently. I got to the airport and my flight was voided. Instead of losing my cool, I calmly sat down and called the travel agent. I got to the airport and there wasn’t a car service like normal. Instead, I was put in a cab and I paid the fare. So you know, that never happens for speakers. Every aspect of the trip is paid for, but not this time. Then I got to the event and I had a limited access pass. Every other step I took I was being stopped by security telling me I couldn’t go that way, do this or that. Instead of getting mad, I laughed to myself at how serious the security was about their job and I appreciated the safety of the event. I took my son with me and was supposed to have a double-bed room. Instead, I was told that the agency had me on the list for a single-bed room. I was literally punched and kicked all night by my son as we slept. I guess he had some active dreams. I saw it as a bonding experience instead of paying to go to another hotel with a double bed room or a suite. I also didn’t receive my check. As a speaker you’re always paid before the event or before you leave the event. I didn’t even ask about the check. I figured it wasn’t intentional and I know they’re good for the money. Flights were delayed going and coming back. I always see people yelling at the gate agent about that. All of those things happened and in my mind I pictured people pitching-a-fit and going-off on people who have no control over what’s happening. I smiled, I laughed, and I fought the feelings of arrogance to overcome them with humility.
It’s amazing how quickly we can feel entitled or special and that is dangerous. Humility will take you a long ways and the journey will be worth it. I could have moped around, pouted, and filed complaints but instead I remained positive. It was a good feeling and it came with a lot of peace.
Stay humble. You never know who is watching and arrogance just doesn’t make many friends.
Tony Gaskins Jr.