In the recent months, I’ve been doing a lot of research in to what makes up society’s modern man. As marketing director of a male-oriented brand, it’s really important for me to understand the thoughts and behaviors of men. All the research, focus groups, and general discussions have led to some pretty deep thoughts which often have me questioning my own code of ethics and morals. In my current state of evolution as a man and business professional, this topic of pride hits close to home for me.
There are essentially two kinds of pride. There’s the kind of pride which comes with the sense of achievement. Perhaps you finished a large scale project and are satisfied with the results, or there is fulfillment in accomplishing a major milestone. This kind of pride is a self-esteem booster and one that can have positive effects. Common words that we associate with this kind of pride are: honor, gratification, dignity, pleasure. These are the kind of traits that ‘knights in shining armor’ are made of.
The second kind of pride is essentially a derivative of the first kind but one in which vanity begins to show its face. Now, it’s not just about being proud of the results of that large scale project, but becoming overly confident and showboating those results. It’s having an ego and feeling entitled to treatment that you feel you deserve. This type of pride can be dangerous for various reasons. It can lead to becoming a conceited douche bag. It may prevent you from embracing certain opportunities because of arrogance. Lastly, this type of pride will often force you to make bad decisions out stubbornness to either strive to be different, or prove everyone wrong. It’s important to have standards in life but know that you won’t always be able to uphold to them.
Being a man, we all have a little bit of the second kind of pride. Personally, I believe having a well-balanced ego is good thing. The hard part is trying to keep it in check. As men, we naturally all want to be the alpha male and fight for our own honor. The reality of it is that some men go too far to build that self-worth. Everything in life is about moderation. You can’t have too much of one thing because it becomes bad. What I’ve recently learned is that we are all human and are all vulnerable to different types of weaknesses. The best thing you can do is acknowledge it and allow yourself to be open about it. Chances are, everyone around you can already see that weakness so there’s no real sense in trying to cover it up. At the end of the day no one person is greater than another, so keep that in mind.