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The Standard #51

 

To be absolutely certain, a steadfast belief in one’s abilities is an attribute the contemporary gentleman must possess, especially if he desires success in any aspect of life. Without belief, a gentleman’s talent, and the motivation to utilize it accordingly will gradually dissipate. Faith and conviction is the fountain upon which a gentleman’s confidence is based. Without it, a gentleman can never embrace risk, perform a task to the best of one’s ability, or take advantage of an opportunity. Nevertheless, carrying oneself with said confidence, absent a self-awareness of personal shortcomings or weaknesses, can erroneously lead down a path toward pride and conceit. An overestimation of oneself is a gross miscalculation that renders the gentleman oblivious to personal areas that beg identification and maturation.

Moreover, arrogance is blind to valuable, dissenting opinion and obscures contrasting perspectives. It is a dangerous preoccupation of one’s own importance and skill while devaluing other viewpoints. This unwillingness to recognize limitations, and possibly overcompensate due to personal insecurities, deprive the gentleman of meaningful introspection that shapes character and capability. Trust, a gentleman’s hubris is directly proportional to the disconnect that can exist between belief and reality. As a gentleman’s hubris swells, so does that disconnect as he becomes untethered to facts and truth. It is a delicate dance between vanity and self-assurance that must be regulated by humility, modesty, an openness to learn and willingness to admit wrongs. To be sure, a thoughtful gentleman understands that ultimately unchecked arrogance undermines credibility, hinders growth & development, and breaks trust. A thoughtful gentleman understands that cannot be his legacy.

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