Staying humble in the limelight

Staying humble in the limelight

While watching some of the college football bowl games last weekend, with Jim, I noticed two very distinct reactions to success.
• Excited jump, chest bump, pointing to the sky while looking up
• Showboating, posing for the camera, lifting the shirt showing off muscles

Given the choice of the two behaviors, I would prefer to see the more mellow one. It implies that athlete understands that, at least in football, the success is a team effort. They are not a one-man-show. They didn’t make the touchdown by themselves. They were the one who carried the ball across the line, but someone threw it and many others made blocks so that one player could make the touchdown.

The player who acts as if he’s “all that” doesn’t impress me. The announcers are usually talking about the great stats the person has and how well they should do in the future, but their cocky behavior reminds me of so many other great athletes who didn’t handle the fame well and fell from their lofty tower in disgrace.

Now, I must preface this blog with, “I don’t know these athletes personally.” The showboating show-off might be a really nice guy who treats others with respect and the more humble appearing guy may be the biggest jerk on the planet, but I doubt it.

It must be a tough line to walk between humility and greatness. Even in everyday life, I am more drawn to those who are not standing out in the crowd. Take a look around you. You will see those who act like they are
• a part of the human race and seek to be kind
• the greatest, but they aren’t
• the greatest and they know it
• very talented, yet humble about it

How someone behaves says a lot about who they are, unless they have two different personas (public and private). Which behavior are you drawn to, and why? Which behavior do you exhibit?

The reality is, we are all human. Some of us better at certain things, some of us better at other things. Still just people trying to get along in the world. There’s no need for showboating and telling people how great you are. If you are truly great, we will know without you telling us. In fact, it’s better to have someone (other than yourself) tell us. No one likes to hear someone toot their own horn. Just my opinion.