What makes someone more humble than others

Why we sorely need to be more humble

Roger Federer can do it, none of the others. Why have we forgotten how to be humble? A call for more restraint.

Anyone who has ever entered a lecture hall has most likely already encountered this kind of people. Most of the time they answer when it says: “Do you have any questions?” And then it goes something like this: “When I started working for Ernst & Young after my internship at KPMG, and my line manager for my efficiency and my smart ones I praised inputs, I knew about my extraordinary talent in the field of auditing. Hence my question: Do the cover sheet and table of contents count in the 30-page work? » It later turns out that they sorted mail at EY.

Unfortunately, they are not only to be found in the classroom, but everywhere: the immodest. And there are more and more. They say full-bodied "I worked on television" when they rubbed the plastic trays in the SRF canteen with a damp cloth. Or “I'm a professional in InDesign”, if you know how to open a text field. Those who have already written and published letters to the editor twice suddenly see themselves as journalists, and those who have bought a few thousand likes on Instagram are called influencers. They fluff themselves up, exaggerate, hairstyle, brag - and make themselves extremely unsympathetic.

They hardly seem capable of self-reflection, otherwise they would know how unpopular they make themselves with their immodest behavior. Or they don't care because competence is more important than sympathy. Or at least what they understand by competence. Because mostly they just whip foam anyway.

What actually happened that hardly anyone is modest anymore? That hardly anyone puts their light under a bushel anymore? That instead everyone peddles their successes?

Everyone is an I-AG

Agreed, we live in a time in which business management has spread to the furthest niche of our existence: We optimize everything that can be optimized at all; our body, our schedule, our free time, ironically even the work-life balance. So why not our appearance, our self-portrayal, at any time? On the job market, in love, when looking for an apartment. Especially since there is competition everywhere and it is therefore important to advertise your best attributes.

The ruling meritocracy, in which everyone is the blacksmith of their own fortune, is fueling this: "I've earned it, why shouldn't I stand by it?" Not really a wrong thought; if, in the end, there were strengths and weaknesses in a harmonious relationship. But that's exactly where it lacks. Because the temptation is great to strain the truth in self-marketing - and the line between selling yourself-not-under-value and tuning into facts is fine.

In addition, the immodest have found an ideal platform in social networks. At a time when Youtubers and members of the Kardashian clan are collecting millions and reaching more people than reputable media, who wants to be the bare bones of not having much to offer? So there is plenty of fun and showcasing as much as it can.

The way we act resembles a car commercial more and more: Only advertise the best features - and gloss over the pollutant balance.

The boys (and it is by far not only boys who are immodest) cannot be blamed for this. Popular culture tells us that you only need to throw an almost empty PET bottle so that it lands on the floor to become world famous and super rich. And often enough it is actually enough to impress others with your chatter in order to be successful. The only question is how desirable that is.

Arbitrary but ideal example to illustrate how much it has become the standard to tinker with yourself: Photoshop. With the help of the image editing program, everything becomes beautiful - even what is not beautiful at all. And those who do not believe that we have long since succumbed to the optimization mania should pay attention to how many completely banal nature photos are pimped up with filters on social networks. As if we wanted to prove that nature is even more beautiful thanks to our presence. Let's not fool ourselves; the way we act resembles a car commercial more and more: only advertise the best features - and gloss over the pollutant balance. So that as many as possible buy; even if it's a sham.

Thanks to numerous stages, our career is like a never-ending catwalk. Whether on Tinder, Facebook or Xing - that and how you are perceived is perhaps the most important key to success. Where in the past someone had to open a shop to get noticed, today anyone can open a website and promote their business, their I-AG, even if the former consists of holding products between themselves and the smartphone. Dignity and natural authority, it seems, have given way to showmanship and excessive self-confidence. We hardly have time to respond to our counterparts, no wonder, it comes down to clumsy name-dropping. One could also say: The performance society has eliminated restraint and humility as virtues and made weaknesses taboo in this variety of possibilities for self-expression.

Take Donald Trump, a man who has obvious weaknesses and yet marks the epitome of immodesty: "I have the best words," he claims, as if the vocabulary was not a pool that everyone can use, but a product of his own Geniuses. Trump found the most significant thing about cyclone "Irma", that it is probably the strongest hurricane that a US president has ever experienced.

Stay human

Too bad: the immodest can only convince those who are unable to guess what is behind the facade with their behavior. Or as the character Tywin Lannister puts it in “Game of Thrones” (don't worry, that's nothing intellectually compelling): “Any man who must say 'I am the king' is no true king.” That is to say: Competence, intelligence and reason also show up without us fully proclaiming them.

So who do you want to dazzle with the puffed up fuss? Oneself? Isn't the ostentatious always a sign of a lack of self-esteem? The immodesty an act of desperation?

Modesty is a fine trait and, to a certain extent, also humanity. And we all desperately need it.

Much more sovereign is a bit of understatement. Just like Roger Federer demonstrates and masters. Federer is aware that he is the An exceptional tennis player, but never behaves accordingly or trumpets it. In contrast to other sports stars like Cristiano Ronaldo, who show their vanity to the outside world. Roger, the gentleman, enjoys fame and is silent. And that's exactly what makes him likeable.

Modesty is a fine trait, because it shows that you don't take yourself too seriously, are not a complete narcissist and can endure being said to have two or three weaknesses. Humility is also humanity to a certain extent. And we all desperately need it.

Immanuel Kant also said something clever about modesty (the quote, of course, Googled, not known by heart): "Anyone who makes himself a worm shouldn't complain if he is kicked." Which of course is true. There are undoubtedly situations in which self-marketing is appropriate, but there are many more in which it has no place. The transition zone between “no false modesty” and “self-praise stinks” should be striven for. The more we puff ourselves up, the more difficult it becomes to judge who really has something on the box.

But until we come to our senses again, society turns out to be a marketplace in which everyone tries to shout even louder than the other. After all, there is hope that those who are quiet or quiet are the most likely to attract attention.