This one feels important right now. We are all going through this unbelievable transformation. It’s growth on a mass level. Shadow work is being done willingly and reluctantly across the board. I feel like although this is uncomfortable, we are leveling up and that’s fucking awesome!
As a result of this, many of us have been having some really emotional conversations, making huge changes (or they’re just happening, your level of conscious involvement might be different). Again, I think this is great.
One thing I have noticed however, is the inbalance in the way we view and talk about our emotional selves. Why is it that we feel comfortable celebrating our other achievements but not our personalities, growth or shadow work?
Emotions are hard! Honouring them is a process (you can read more on that here) . If we viewed it the same way we viewed other skills would it be different? Let’s say for example, improving swimming skills and expressing anger in a healthy way.
Anger is a tricky one. It’s one of those emotions we seem to suppress or displace more than others. So, for the sake of this metaphor let’s imagine you’ve been working on it. Recognising that your current method isn’t working for you,you go within, into the couldron, to do your shadow work. You have faced your issues, found healthier processes (perhaps with the help of a professional) and are now practicing them. You feel good about your work and progress. Proud even, as well you should!
Is this different from someone who recognises they aren’t a strong swimmer? Perhaps they want to do more wild swimming, so they go to the pool, maybe get some lessons, work on their technique and practice them. Hooray. The humans have levelled up!
Both of these people should be equally proud of themselves. Why then, is it OK for the swimmer to express that pride, tell others what they have learnt and celebrate their success… but not the person who has overcome their anger issues? Why is one entitled to be confident but the other seen as arrogant? Is it purely because we are talking about emotions? Or our inner selves? If the swimmer says “look I’m really good at swimming now,” people agree. If a person says “I’m good at expressing anger” I give it 5 minutes before they have past failures pointed out to them. Mental!
Arrogance is defined as ‘having an exaggerated sense of one’s abilities or importance’. So if we use our swimming metaphor again. The ability to swim is measurable. You can see the progress. A confident person could say “I’m really good at swimming” you can see it. It is obvious if this person is actually good at swimming. If they said “I am THE Best swimmer in the world!” it could be arrogance or they could be the world record holder for long distance swimming. Still measurable.
We don’t have shadow work Olympics. The level of progress we make in our own lives is specific to each of us. What is a huge breakthrough to me, might not be important to you. It’s also very hard to measure from the outside. You have to have known a person for a long time to be able to see their growth. Who’s to say what an ‘exaggerated sense’ is. Surely it’s about personal perspective. I know I’ve put in a lot of work and I feel confident about my achievements. If you want to learn more on self confidence as a theory The NLP centre has some really insightful stuff, I particularly like this article.
I have noticed some correlations in the times I have been accused of arrogance: It has been said as an insult, not constructive criticism. It hasn’t come from the people who cheer for me to succeed. Rather from people who don’t know me well enough to know my story.
These observations indicate that the accusation of arrogance is more to do with them than me. Perhaps my confidence and self love triggers something in them (sorry, not sorry). For some reason, maybe it’s a British thing, self confidence is seen as a negative quality. We are so quick to point our flaws, it’s so much harder to celebrate the parts of ourselves we love. Almost taboo even.
Have you ever been writing a C.V or job application and find it really hard when it comes to the ‘bigging yourself up’ part? Like, it shouldn’t be that hard to identify what you’re good at. I think deep down it is because in the rest of our lives we are shamed for that exact behaviour.
Well I say: no more! We are here on this path to evolve, grow and support each other in doing so. We will be the elders and ancestors one day. What advice would you give to your younger self? I sincerely hope it wouldn’t be to dull your shine, to make yourself smaller or less for the comfort of others less evolved than you. Yeah, I said it.
For the sake of this rant I’ve been asking around. When have you been called arrogant? When have you felt someone was being arrogant? Is it something that stops you from celebrating your success?
The over all feed back is firstly, it’s very hard to quantify. Secondly, arrogance is often a defense mechanism; pretending/believing/projecting that you’re more capable than others at something. We see this clearly in ourselves. Is it part of the ‘fake it to make it culture?’ is it so we don’t have to be honest about our fear of failure? I for one struggle with imposter syndrome and I feel my reluctance to be accused of arrogance has often held me back more. How can I be so unsure of myself in some areas and accused of arrogance the next? I’ll tell you. The people throwing around these accusations are feeling threatened. Your confidence or abilities in something threaten theirs so they cast their ‘Evil Eye’ on you.
Rather than saying “wow! this person is really good/confident in this area, how can I be more like that?” our ego gets in the way. So, it becomes “there’s no way they’re as good as they think they are, I’m going to prove it so I feel better about myself and the fact that I don’t measure up”
And I have decided (drumroll please…), I don’t care anymore. If that is arrogant of me, I’m OK with that. You’re entitled to your opinion. I will not be engaging with low vibe behaviour. I know myself, I know where my strengths and weaknesses are and I work on them every fucking day. If you feel the need to attack me while I am trying to better myself, for whatever reason. You are not going to like my response (it will involve lots of sass, and the offensive fingers). I will surround myself with people who cheer for me and can communicate in a constructive, compassionate way. If that’s not you and you feel me excluding you is arrogant. I will have succeeded. ( uh bah, bye)
I am aware that simply writing this will bring accusations of arrogance upon myself. So be it. Successful people don’t let it stop them. Look at Freddie Mercury, Bowie, Muhammed Ali : all outwardly confident (no doubt just as capable of having imposter syndrome) they didn’t let the haters hold them back. Were they arrogant? At some point they definitely would have been accused of such. Did it stop them? Did it fuck!
The reason we’re successful darling? My overall charisma of course.FREDDIE MERCURY
I will not be less to make others more comfortable. None of us should. I try not to judge others. Envy is a strange emotion however it doesn’t have to lead to basic bitch, jealous behaviour. How nice it would be if we could say “wow! You’re really confident in that, what’s your secret?” or simply “I envy your skills in this area, I’m gonna work on that for myself”
We are experiencing mass lockdown therapy. Let’s use this to stop trying to drag each other down. I’m no Freddie Mercury. I am however, trying to be the best version of myself. The best witch I can be so that when I am an elder and ancestor I will be wise and helpful.
So in the spirit of self confidence, tell me something about your character are proud of. Let’s shout about our success and cheer each other on.
Rant over, peace out witches ✌️