Humble people can receive a bad rap. Humility is frequently associated with being too passive, submissive or insecure, but this couldn’t be any further from the truth.
Instead, humble people are quite the opposite—confident and competent in themselves so much that, as a result, they seek to self-actualize by helping theirs. Humble people are still self-efficacious; they just don’t feel the impetus to boast about themselves but instead, let their actions speak for their ideals. To be humble is not to think less of oneself, but to think of oneself less.
To help identify what humble looks like (and how you can adopt greater humility for yourself. After all, who doesn’t need greater humility?), here are 13 habits of humble people:
They’re Situationally Aware
Situational awareness is a function of emotional intelligence as it is being aware of oneself, the group, the actions of each and the social dynamics therein. As such, situationally aware people aim their focus outward as they try to absorb (i.e. learn) more about the situation
They Retain Relationships
Studies have shown that humble people are more likely to help friends than their prideful counterparts. As a result, they maintain stronger personal and professional relationships. A study of more than 1,000 people—with roughly 200 in leadership positions—revealed that companies with humble people in leadership positions had a more engaged workforce and less employee turnover.
They Make Difficult Decisions With Ease
Since humble people put others’ needs before their own, when faced with difficult decisions they respect the moral and ethical boundaries that govern the decision and base their decision-making criteria off a sense of shared purpose rather than self-interest.
They Put Others First
Humble people know their self-worth. As a result, they don’t feel the need to cast themselves before others just to show them how much they know. Instead, humble people realize that nobody cares how much they know until those people know how much they’re cared for.
Humility is the true key to success. Successful people lose their way at times. They often embrace and overindulge from the fruits of success. Humility halts this arrogance and self-indulging trap. Humble people share the credit and wealth, remaining focused and hungry to continue the journey of success.
– Rick Pitino
There’s nothing more annoying that being in a conversation with somebody who you can just tell is dying to get his or her words in. When you see their mental gears spinning, it’s a sign they’re not listening but rather waiting to speak. Why? Because they believe that what they have to say is more valuable than listening to you. In other words, they’re placing their self-interest first.
Humble people, however, actively listen to others before summarizing the conversation. Moreover, humble people don’t try to dominate a conversation or talk over people. They’re eager to understand others because they’re curious. Speaking of which…
Humble people seek knowledge because they are perpetual learners and realize that they don’t have all the answers. They glean knowledge from the experiences of others and crave more opportunities to learn.
They Speak Their Minds
While active listening is certainly important, humble people aren’t afraid to speak their minds because being wrong is not a fear they have. They know that to bridge the gap between unwillingness and willingness there must be action; they summon the courage to face difficulty as they graciously accept to sacrifice themselves.
They Take Time To Say “Thank You”
At a business dinner, for example, no matter whether you’re engaged in a heated conversation with others or not, humble people take the time to express thanks to the service for tending to the little things.
They Have An Abundance Mentality
Humble people don’t believe that one person’s “win” necessarily mean another person’s “loss.” Instead, they know there’s plenty of opportunity to go around and that finding it just necessitates collaboration and communication.
They Start Sentences With “You” Rather Than “I”
Humble people put others at the forefront of their thoughts. Humble people brag about others, while the prideful people brag about themselves.
They Accept Feedback
Humble people are not only receptive to constructive criticism but actively seek it because they know that feedback is a pathway to improvement.
They Assume Responsibility
Rather than eschewing blame on “the system” or the behaviors of others, humble people assume responsibility by speaking up and owning their part.
They Ask For Help
Part of being humble means realizing that you don’t have all the answers. No one does. Humble people acknowledge what they do and do not know and enlist help for the latter.
Humility displays a willingness to learn and become better–two things that everybody should cultivate. How is humility viewed in your organization?