“I am truly sorry”
“Can you please help me”
“I need a favour”
Words like these aren’t so easy to say or sometimes admit. Most times we rather keep quiet or even pretend that everything else is going smoothly…. except of course you’re drowning in a pool of water. Otherwise most times, as Henry Thoreau noted, humans often lead lives of quiet desperation.
It requires a certain kind of humility to seek out a mentor. It requires humility to admit that you don’t know everything and once in a while shut up and listen, opening your mouth only to ask questions or clarify. It requires humility to think Win-Win or to understand others before seeking to be understood. It requires humility to read a great self-help book from an author you’ve never heard of prior to now, and still abide by its lessons and principles. It requires humilty to even read your Bible or pray.
You see everyone has a shadow. It follows you everywhere you go. Whether you like it or not. Except perhaps at noon. When the sun is high up and blazing in all its glory.
In the same way we also have an Ego that follows us wherever we go. Sometimes the Ego can even appear larger than life. Especially when the light now shining upon us is set at an awkward angle.
As kids we would make shadows on walls using candle light. Then with our fingers as puppets we would make the shadows appear as many things from dragons to talking dogs. To be able to do so, you have to be great with contortions and get creative with twisting your fingers in weird manner like a witch would.
In the same way we can attempt to make our Ego look bigger than we really are; we can act a certain way, talk carelessly and even brag, dress more expensive clothes than we save. Drive a car that is more expensive than our business start-up capital. So we end up contorting our true selves and eventually getting twisted.
The legendary teacher, Zig Ziglar, once said, “You can either feed your family or you can feed your ego. But you can’t do both of them at the same time.” I completely agree.