Yes, one of the classic Seven Deadly Sins is Pride. Many unpleasant things, some of which definitely come across as curses, have been said about pride. For example, “Pride goeth before the fall” and Emily Brontë’s “Proud people breed sad sorrows for themselves.”
An excess of pride can be troubling on many levels. But there is a big difference between the boastful, arrogant variance of pride and being proud of the work you do.
A little pride is not about how others perceive you. That’s an important distinction to put out there. Rather, pride in this instance is about feeling good about the job you have done, or an achievement, an accomplishment, or general success.
Feeling good about your work is positive. Everyone should be able to do things, do them well, and feel good about it. Taking a little pride in your work is not harmful.
The line gets crossed when this becomes arrogance, overconfidence, or narcissism. When pride excludes modesty and reality, you have reached the harmful pride that is often spoken of and denounced. For a dictionary perfect example, sorry to get political on you but this is too perfect — I give you Donald Trump.
You can be proud of doing good things, for yourself and other people, but it cannot be clung to like a life raft. Pride in moderation is a passing thing, is released after it is felt, and makes way in its wake for a modest boost in self-esteem.
Pride is a spark
Taking pride in an accomplishment is a spark, a moment of celebration for a job well done. It isn’t all that important what the thing is that you may have accomplished, so long as what you are proud of didn’t hurt or have a negative impact on anyone else.
Let me clarify this. If you feel proud because you prevented someone from voting, or you denied someone a civil right, or you hurt someone physically or emotionally, you have crossed the line. Your pride is conceit, and feeling good at the harm of another is never something anyone should be proud of. But I digress.
Feeling good about things that you do builds confidence. Confidence is another concept that, in over-abundance, can turn sour like pride can. However, having confidence in moderation builds up self-esteem, which in turn can help you do more good for yourself, and the world at large.
Unless you are a sociopath or psychopath, you do not seek to harm anyone else. Taking a little pride in what you do and releasing it can go a long way towards creating more positivity, and more things to feel good about.
Mindfulness is the key
Like many things in this life, when you are mindful of your thoughts, feelings, and the intentional actions you take, you can work more easily with this. When you feel that pride for the job well done, you can also let it go and move on, because of your mindfulness.
Why is mindfulness so important to things? The reason is because so many people in this world are clearly asleep at the wheel. How else can you explain the ignorance and blatant disregard for human decency among many of our so-call leaders? If people were more aware of themselves, and what they are thinking and feeling, I suspect the empowerment they would gain from that would let them see through the lies.
This is not a tangent from the topic. Pride is often used as a weapon alongside fear to keep the masses down. When you do not wish to in any way look like “that guy” and the terrible things they are doing, you might choose to go silent. Silence doesn’t help remove “that guy” from the picture.
This is why taking some pride in the good that you do matters. Being mindful of this, and how it can empower you can go a long way towards improving your life. If you become more content and happy with your life, that tends to spread.
I don’t know about you, but I desire to do all I can to help others live the best they can.
Finally, know that you are worthy and deserving of being proud of who you are and what you do. You are a worthwhile individual, and you deserve to take some moderate pride in that. Be mindful and aware of this, and see what it can do to make life more abundant and amazing.