3 Ways Humility Can Transform Your Life
Humility is nothing but the disappearance of self in the vision that God is all. ~Andrew Murray
We live in a world that pushes and presses us to be better than the next person. Our self-worth is often calculated by how we compare — or measure up — to someone else.
It’s a stressful way to live, and it’s not sustainable. The truth is, fighting and clawing our way to the top along this earthly journey is an empty battle. It’s not the path to greatness. In fact, some say: great people are the ones who are willing to be little. Think about that…
I’m contemplating this thought as I sip on a warm cup of jasmine green tea. How can becoming smaller make us greater? This idea is completely counter to the messaging of this world. Yet, when I allow this question to move through me, I sense a peace within. The feeling is as comforting and warm as my tea.
What comes to me, in this moment, is that we were not made to struggle. We were made to soar. We expand our wings when we breathe in humility.
Humility allows for space to expand because we have let go of all the pre-conceived notions of who we are. Through admitting that we cannot effectively live out this life alone, we seek a higher source. It’s that moment when we admit that life by us is not as meaningful as life by God.
And, so I’d like to share a few ways to practice humility in our daily lives:
- Being kind and humble — gentle — even when facing an insult or an annoyance. It’s not easy, I know, but what would it be like for you if you gave yourself the gift of not allowing others to provoke you? How would life change for you if you understood that their provocations were not about you, but about them? Would you see that person differently? Might you hold yourself in a kinder way, and move on? You see, humbleness is not about being weak, it has everything to do with possessing a gentle spirit, one that is strong and ever-present.
- Being soft-spoken regarding one’s own accomplishments. This is the opposite of society’s “toot your own horn” rule. To put it plainly, it gets quite exhausting when our lives become all about us, and not about God. When we fill ourselves up with earthly successes and use those trophy moments as stepping stones to superiority, we miss the point. We don’t recognize the beauty of gratitude, and of knowing that our blessings are not man-made, they are God-made.
- Being willing to choose the harder route as opposed to the easier path. Sometimes it seems more straightforward to give up, rather than to rise up. Each of us will be faced with that moment, at some time or another. It’s a critical turning point. Will we, with humility, take the path less chosen and allow it to mold us and transform us into the person we are destined to become? Or, will we stay soft and stuck in our own ego? Unwilling to do what is hard because we refuse to admit a need for growth. I like what Ernest Hemingway has to say about this: true nobility is being superior to your former self. The easy path rarely stretches us. The harder route, most often, breaks us open and births a new and more brilliant self. Maybe it’s that workout you’ve been putting off, or that adventure on your bucket list that you tell yourself you don’t have time far. Perhaps, it’s forgiving someone who has hurt you rather than holding on to anger.
Maybe it’s dropping the facade and standing true in your authenticity. How might taking the harder route expand your life today?
Humility is empowering. We don’t hold all of the answers. We were never meant to. We were meant to, with humble hearts, make ourselves pliable to God. Allowing Him to work through us and in us, so that we may discover all we are capable of being. Indeed, humility leads to greatness through God. The greatness you were born to realize and to live out.
Onward to the beauty of humility,
Michelle Madrid-Branch is an author, speaker and global advocate for women and children. She is the host of The Greater Than Project, a web series exploring the greatness within women. She is also the author of Adoption Means Love: Triumph of the Heart, The Tummy Mummy, and Mascara Moments: Embracing the Woman in the Mirror.