I’ve heard it said that what you hate most in others, is the shadow within yourself. To that end, and to better focus in on my shortcomings, I’m setting up a Character Defects File. First on the list: Haughtiness.
Step Seven: Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
Haughtiness takes the trait that I fear most – arrogance – and slathers a thick layer of scorn on top. It’s not enough to think I’m better than you; I also have to be mad at you for being the lesser. What an unbelievably useless and destructive emotion; to be angry that someone isn’t as good as me. And if they were, I’d instantly switch over to envy. So being haughty serves no actual purpose. There’s no result from this attitude that makes anyone feel good.
Check out the words that Haughtiness keeps company with: disdain, contempt, arrogance, and my favorite, supercilious. These are not healthy synonyms.
For years I was an arrogance identifier. It was far and away the trait that pricked up my ears and had me on point like a dog seeing a ghost in the corner. Anyone displaying this behavior was instantly on my d-bag list, a person that I could look down on with disdainful scorn.
How’s that for irony?
It’s an emotion shared by most sociopaths, I imagine, being antisocial and isolationist by nature. What a wonderfully categorical filter, allowing me to put someone in a nice, neat box that I label and put on a shelf. Done with that person.
Now, having asked Him to remove this shortcoming doesn’t mean recognizing this trait in others is a failing. There are haughty people out there, and I still run into them. Hell, I work for one. But when I allow my judgement to interfere with my sanity, to upset my mental apple cart, well, that’s when I’m turning over my power to my disease. That’s making a choice to be miserable.
So, I’ll say it again, because I need to:
My Creator, I am now willing that you should have all of me, good and bad. I pray that you now remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to you and my fellows. Grant me the strength, as I go out from here, to do your bidding. Amen.
And I move on to more important things. Like life.