Saturday, April 15, 2006

There’s a fine line between Narcissism and Arrogance

… ongoing spluttering of ideas that I am not even sure make any sense…so pardon the confusion ;)

When I say we are all narcissistic it is meant to show that humans in general are a self-centered species. We had to be in the olden days, as a survival mechanism. There is probably only one relationship in where someone is completely selfless and that is the relationship between a mother and a child.

I mentioned that it was a good thing to own ones narcissism as well as their insecurities. But there is a point that has to be made; there is a big difference between being confident and being arrogant.

Here is an example:

Confidence – “I am hot”

Arrogance – “I am hotter than you.”

Confidence – “I am smart”

Arrogance – “I am smarter than you.”

Arrogance is just insecurity in a different mask. When somebody feels they have to “one up” people, outdo people, and remind people that they are better they are just overcompensating for their insecurity.

Here in lies the basic foundational secret in forming successful human relations. People don’t like you based upon what you have done in life, who you know, how successful you are, or how much money you have. People like you based upon how you make them feel. Make someone feel good and you will never be forgotten. Spend the entire time shouting from the rooftops about the great job you have, how smart you are, how special you are and you will get nowhere. Why should this be important? After all who cares what people think right? There is the other balance. You should not care what people think, but you shouldn’t alienate people either. The right people will love you no matter what, even if you are arrogant. But, wouldn’t you want to make those you love and who love you feel good? That is the difference.

Arrogance is like a mask of false perfection. And, like I said before, no one likes the hero to be perfect. Then again no one likes someone who is around him or her where all they talk about what is wrong with him or her. Balance.

For the guys who read this – that is why when you try to impress a girl with “I’m so great” stories your chances of a second date dwindle.

It is a delicate balance - to believe in your worth enough and be humble enough. To know your value and love yourself but to maintain that you are not better than anyone.

This is why I wrote about being ok about being narcissistic and insecure. You need to find the balance of both. Go too far one way and you become this pity party table for one. Go the other way and people wont be able to relate to you and you will alienate.

I am reminded of one of my all time favorite poems by Kipling.

…” If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings -nor lose the common touch,”

Spend a few minutes a day making people you love feel special and feel good. You would be surprised how far a sincere compliment goes. This is why successful bosses take time to give positive feedback, happy employees like their jobs and those that like their jobs do better. If you want to make a guy feel special, ask him about something you know nothing about. Admit you know nothing about it. Make him feel good about knowing something you don’t.

The truly sexy person tells others they are sexy and believes they are too.

The very unsexy person tells everyone how sexy THEY are and never tells anyone they are.

So how do we find this balance?

Once we start seeing ourselves are perfectly imperfect humans, all different yet all the same. And, we own everything about us good and bad and love ourselves no matter what. That is when the balance naturally comes because we will see others that way as well.

Easy to say, but not easy to do. Yet sometimes the things that seem so hard only take one flip of a switch.

Stay Tuned Next Week for an essay on the virtures of baseball and disneyland - and why both are essential for survival :)

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