Humility is defined as a modest view of one’s own importance. In practice it involves the acceptance that we are not always right and don’t always know, without either concern impacting our sense of self-worth.
Flexibility is defined as the quality of bending easily without breaking. In practice it is the ability to accept new points of view or adjust to new facts with a sense of interest or curiosity, rather than viewing new facts as threats.
Attempting to cope by predicting the next obstacle or challenge is a tenuous way of adapting to the infinite number possibilities the future may hold. Humility and flexibility work together to allow for us to return to our center when we experience the unexpected gusts of life. They allow for us to maintain stability or the ability to return to equilibrium after we are disrupted.
Tips for Practicing Humility
Spend more time listening than you do talking.
Accept that you are not the best at everything.
Ask for help and advice.
Learn to give credit where it is due and give praise for a job well done.
Welcome different opinions.
Recognize your flaws and be aware that you are not perfect.
Avoid bragging or showing off.
Tips for Practicing Flexibility
Look for opportunities to give up control.
Challenge yourself to try new behaviors and break out of habitual patterns.
Aim for flexibility, not perfection.
Look for opportunities to compromise.
Remain teachable and learn from your mistakes.
Practice slowing down and being intentional about your decisions.
Practice mindfulness meditation and everyday mindfulness.
At any given point we all face challenges to our sense of stability and equilibrium. On very hard days we may be thrown off balance repeatedly and experience a complete loss of stability. Such days are a fact of life. Humility and flexibility fuel our resilience and allow for us to return more readily to a state of equilibrium.
Dr. Thomas Lindquist, Psy.D.
Visit us at lindquistpsych.com
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