On pride

All my life I have suffered from too much pride.  I’m not ready to let go of the conceit that fostered it, just to acknowledge how severely it has impacted my effectiveness.

You see, one of its manifestations makes it almost impossible too get anything truly important done.  I am so proud of my own ideas that I find it very difficult to delegate or, even more importantly, to share responsibility for a task with others.

In case you don’t already know it, let me assure you that the result, getting only what you can accomplish on your lonesome done, is far less in quantity, and probably even in quality, than what might have been accomplished, even if it would be less perfect, had you worked as a small part of a much larger group effort.  The quality of nothing, after all, is pretty low.

Complicating matters considerably was the fact that my pride drove great ambition.  If only this or that, I might have had great power,money, influence.  Or so I’ve always thought.

But as it turned out, I was just a good person and a good teacher.  I failed miserably at saving the world in any of the multitude of definitions of world saving I’ve used over the years.

Meanwhile, I’ve botched every chance I ever had at achieving the least of personal happiness.

I’ll not even begin to list them, but suffice it to say my failures in this regard include a son, four wives, and plenty of ideas which, if followed with enough sweat and determination, would almost certainly have led me to enough wealth to have hired people to run  my imagined empire to my specifications.  Or so my pride keeps telling me.

Of course, those would have probably cut into one another, so who’s to say what lay down the paths not traveled?  One strength my pride won’t let me let go of is the many good pieces of self-advice I often use to help me get through the reality of my day to day.  Here the adage, “You can see that it would be different, but there is no way to know how” comes to mind.

So I leave you now as I’ve always found myself: proud.  But of what I’m not so sure.

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