Pride and People

Humans are guilty for succumbing to the innate vices born within. While most of us know the seven deadly sins that derail us from our daily venture, we often neglect that they exist, believing that we aren’t wrong. Perhaps, the most difficult part of being a creature with emotion, is admitting when you’re wrong, especially when your pride is hurt.

Having pride in who you are isn’t necessarily a bad thing, rather it turns negative depending on the founding reason behind it. It’s natural, considering all that you’ve been through to achieve what you have, to convince yourself you know what’s best. The hardest may be admitting that in certain situations of which you’ve been wronged, that you weren’t exactly right.  

Out of the seven deadly sins: Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed, and Sloth, I’ve found Pride to be the most psychology damaging. Pride takes away the faults you see in yourself. If you are unhappy and angry at the world, it’s because of everything else around. Your actions then morph around the idea that you are simply better or “different” than everyone else. Of course, you’d never say that, but it comes out in how you treat others.

A more genuine and stable self-worth is based upon validating, affirming, and valuing ourselves as we are. Self-worth is a function of living with dignity, which exists apart from any accomplishments. Achievements are ephemeral and can become a trap. If too much of our attention goes toward accomplishing bigger and better things in order to feel good, then we become addicted to external sources of gratification.

Why Pride Is Nothing to Be Proud Of by John Amodeo Ph.D., MFT

Two Types of Pride

Authentic pride. People who are confident, agreeable, hard-working, energetic, kind, empathetic, non-dogmatic, and high in genuine self-esteem would draw inspiration from others and would want to be emulated by others.

Hubristic pride. [People who are] associated with rocky relationships, low levels of conscientiousness and high levels of disagreeableness, neuroticism, narcissism, and poor mental health outcomes. [Their] subjective feelings of superiority and arrogance may facilitate dominance by motivating behaviors such as aggression, hostility, and manipulation.

Pride and Creativity by Scott Barry Kaufman

In seeing this, someone with hubristic pride would consider themselves to have authentic pride because ironically, it would be their pride that kept them from viewing themselves in a negative light. How do you know what type of pride you have then? Here are some signs:

  • Incessant need to teach others: You impose your way of learning onto others, rather than letting them find their own way. You genuinely feel as though it’s helpful, “sharing your knowledge,” but doing it consistently, particularly when others don’t ask, is a form of asserting your dominance and superiority.
  • Ignore advice: Despite all you debate about regarding a decision or situation, you don’t consider the words of others because understanding other people’s perspective is not of value to you. You talk about it only to self affirm you’re right.
  • Constantly Critical: You point out the negatives in people and their actions, yet these critiques don’t apply to you. It makes you feel better to point out the faults in others because of the shame you feel for your own.
  • Obsessed with Aesthetics: Vanity is a type of pride. When you equate your physical appearance to self-worth, you demand the attention of others. You want affirmation and attention to feel of value. You find passive aggressive ways to make others feel guilty about your condition like, “You could be fit like me,” or “I look so fat.”  
  • Avoiding efforts of communication: Holding grudges, resentment, and cutting people out of your life are all evidence that you have hubristic pride. By ignoring people, you deem them not worth your time, disregarding them as a person and labeling them as inferior.

In the divided opinions of today, people are quick to label others without understanding their perspective. There is a right and wrong, and if someone doesn’t agree with what that means to you, then they’re immediately lesser. We all deserve to be treated with respect, so we must treat others respectfully. In letting go of superiority and accepting humanity for what it is, we uncover the truth about ourselves.

Freedom, Independence, and Loneliness

Outside, the sun shines through clouds, tempting those stuck behind a window, wishing they could feel it on their skin. As a prisoner of responsibility, one is never free of anything. There is always something keeping you back. When we think of freedom we think of it as having the capability to do whatever we want, whenever we want. Of course, the case isn’t true with the average person: there’s work, family, pets, bills, and so much more that we’re responsible for.


Freedom consists of three main principles:

1. The absence of human coercion or restraint preventing one from choosing the alternatives one would wish.

2. The absence of physical constraints in natural conditions which prevent one from achieving one’s chosen objectives.

3. The possession of the means or the power to achieve the objective one chooses of one’s own volition.

Rashan John, Pathanamthitta, Kerala, India

What happens when you don’t feel free? You feel helpless, ashamed, weak, and hateful. Worse, it’s a feeling that you don’t often recognize. I know, because I’ve been there. Out of the three principles of freedom, I’ve felt most influenced by human coercion. Then again, who hasn’t? We all have family members or friends who tell us what we “should” and “should not” do. Everyone thinks they know better and constantly impose their way of thinking onto you.

At first, you’re rebellious, but after countless comments and hours of influence, you give in and become a person you never wanted to be in the first place. Better than that, you’re not allowed to dislike it. You’re not allowed to oppose others on how you want to be or act for they “know better.” You’re told that this it’s good for you, that these people care about you. In losing your ability to say no, you become miserable because you never thought you’d end up the way others wanted you to be.

Most people aren’t free, so they don’t want you to be. Your dream isn’t realistic because someone older and wiser couldn’t achieve theirs. You should care about making money more than doing what makes you happy because that’s what everyone else did. You can’t do what you want because you have other responsibilities. When you give into these notions, you normalize the negativity and spread it to others.

For a while, I thought freedom and independence were symbiotic. If I gained independence from others and control over my life, I’d be free. While it’s true that these two things coincide with one another, there’s a fine line to walk along when trying to find yourself without losing relationships. The pursuit can be lonely. Loneliness is life threating to a person’s psychological and physical state. A person can feel lonely in a room full of people, in a marriage or family. Being lonely means to feel disconnected, unable to share your thoughts.

“That solitude which we often lament in our life with others betrays our misunderstanding of its meaning. We live together failing to recognize what unites us. Thus even the smallest offense becomes a pretense for breaking down the bonds of trust.”

2019 An Epidemic of Loneliness

It’s difficult to share the pain with others. Especially the type of pain that comes with feeling out of control of your life. There are so many things we are all blessed with, and to express some negativity about how you feel in your current state, makes you feel guilty. You convince yourself that everyone around you is right and you are wrong, thus disconnecting from them because they couldn’t possibly understand.

Take Control of Your Life.

Humans have limits. If we aren’t capable of knowing our limit, our body will do it for us. Breaking the hold of those keeping us back is a step in the right direction, but it’s not enough just to set yourself free. You need the support of the ones you love once you make your decision. Without people to share your highs and lows, you can feel lonely. But your loneliness is dependent on you. People do want to listen. They want to help. There are those out there who do love you and any decision you make. You have to just have to allow them to.  

Chasing Daydreams

All of us have a dream or vision of what we want to achieve or who we want to be. Before the kids and marriage, before the real world forces you to face the grueling truth of what it takes to live. Making that dream a vision and turning it into reality takes work.

When you have a dream, you fantasize about the things you want to happen now. Tomorrow, you want to wake up, look in the mirror, and see a version of yourself that you love. Your parents teach you to dream, the world tells you to dream, but when you hit the real world, you get stuck in monotony and mediocrity. You feel guilty you’re not working toward your goal, you feel lazy you’re stuck in one place, so you put your dream off till a better time and the cycle continues without you changing a thing.

“Man, alone, has the power to transform his thoughts into physical reality; man, alone, can dream and make his dreams come true.”

Napoleon Hill

“Lose your dreams and you might lose your mind.”

Mick Jagger

After a while, the pressure from your family, friends and society wears you down and you tell yourself, that it’s okay to give up on your dream. That you’re happy with where you’re at, that sometimes you have to know when to give up. Why do we give up on ourselves? Whether your dreams are big or small, their worth pursuing. In striving for your dreams, here are a few reminders:

  • Stop comparing yourself to others. It’s difficult, we all do it. When you see a person of similar age and opportunity whose reached the success you’ve always wished for, you either wonder how they were able to achieve so much while you weren’t, or believe they don’t deserve it. Instead, change the way you view them, use them as inspiration or healthy competition.
  • Make a decision and stick with it. My dream is to be a published author. Throughout my college career and current adult life, I’ve had people suggest a repertoire of things I could do. I admit I get suck into these deviations and wonder who I would be if I followed a different path. Despite the fact that your loved ones may not approve or even share the same enthusiasm you have for your dream, don’t let that sway you.
  • Keep at it, positively. Working toward the vision you see for your future is a treacherous road riddled with obstacles to stop you. At times, it’ll feel like the entire world is conspiring against you. Finding the motivation and time for your goals between the mundane tasks of daily life can feel impossible. Look yourself in the mirror and tell the doubt that you will be who you want to be.

I haven’t achieved yet the vision I have for myself, and still there are times I wonder, what’s the point? The point is that this is for me. This is who I want to be. I don’t want to be old an regret not going after something because I didn’t want to play the game of life. If you keep doing what you want to do, you’ll eventually find success. Like Eli Young Band sings, “Keep on dreaming even if it breaks your heart.”

Lifetime Happiness and Health

Lifetime happiness is an elusive notion, one that has been discussed over generations. The answer to happiness has always been retold like folklore, but now there is scientific proof. A 75 year Harvard Study of Adult Development, revealed that the key to long term happiness, mental and physical health, is having healthy relationships.

[Close relationships] protect people from life’s discontents, help to delay mental and physical decline, and are better predictors of long and happy lives than social class, IQ, or even genes.

Harvard study, almost 80 years old, has proved that embracing community helps us live longer, and be happier By Liz Mineo

It’s not about the quantity of personal relationships that one may have, it’s about the quality of those relationships. Mending friendships, rekindling romance, and dissolving grudges are just as important forms of self care as hygiene or fitness. People are lonely creatures. It’s possible to feel lonely in a city of millions or lonely in a room filled with family. Loneliness is the largest, life-draining emotion a person can have. That’s why maintaining healthy relationships is important.

Psychiatry professor and current director of the Harvard study, Robert Waldinger, goes into depth in his Ted Talk, explaining the importance of quality relationships, its correlation to life’s longevity, and how even an unhappy relationship could be worse than not having one at all. Mental health has a direct correlation with physical health. There are many scientific studies that illustrate how poor mental health can affect blood pressure, mental deterioration, and an increased risk of cancer.

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) has categorized mental illness into two. Any mental illness (AMI) is “defined as a mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder, [ranging from] mild, moderate, and even severe impairment.” This means that AMI could be how a person compartmentalizes things or how they may negatively treat others due to their own pain. Serious mental illness (SMI) “is defined as a mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder resulting in serious functional impairment.”

The overall data concludes that 18.9% or an estimated 46.6 million US adults over 18 had prevalence of AMI. That’s a lot of people who are suffering from something. Even if it’s not serious or need of medical treatment, there are millions who are in a similar situation of loneliness and disconnect.

Connecting the statistics from NIMH and results from Harvard’s Study of Adult Development, it’s apparent that the seemingly obvious notion of maintaining relationships for health, happiness, and self care has gone unnoticed by many. Indeed, there are mental issues that need to be consulted with a professional. Some, however, can be resolved with self-awareness and essentially, love.

It’s never too late to practice self-care. In addition to doctor’s recommendations to eating healthier and exercising more, working on maintaining the spark in marital relationships can reduce the affects from the pains of aging. There are also those who believe that their life expectancy is based on family generations before them. According to Harvard’s study, “the role of genetics and long-lived ancestors proved less important to longevity than the level of satisfaction with relationships in midlife, now recognized as a good predictor of healthy aging.”

There are some mental and physical conditions that are unpreventable, and the effects of one’s previous experiences can impact a person’s life for decades. Rather than being a statistic, there are ways to alter the outcome of your situation. If it’s one thing that science and belief has proven to be true is that love for yourself and those in your positive relationships will bring with it, good health.

Unconditional, pure, and good love within romance, friendship, and family will lead a longer, happier life. So when you’re feeling depressed, or out of control of your thoughts and emotions, take a moment and do something new with someone you love, reconnect with a friend or family member. Create and nurture positive relationships because the key to a rich life is love.

The Relationship’s Emotional Rock

Love relies on compromise and nurture. Through the lifetime of any relationship, there’s give and take between the parties involved romantically. Emotions are a touchy subject, particularly between two people. One person may feel like they’re putting in all the effort, supporting their partner emotionally. The other may feel like the connection is lost all together.

Over time, two people can disconnect because they feel the love and attachment fades within a marriage or relationship. We are human. We feel emotion. Still, so many of us ignore that part of ourselves, and in turn, disregard it in others. Romance is more than lust and attraction, it’s support and intimacy, emotionally and physically. Here are a few tips to emotional stability within relationships:

The important thing is that you gently communicate your feelings, so you both know where you stand and so you can figure out how best to help one another deal with the situation.

Emotionally Supporting Your Partner by Barton Goldsmith Ph.D.
  1. Touch Each Other: People need human touch, and in certain circumstances, a loving embrace works better to communicate than words. When your partner is upset and frustrated, even touching their hand or arm could put them at ease.
  2. Communicate and Listen: Both men and women want to be heard. We all want to express ourselves and have our feelings validated. It’s hard to remember, as a partner, that we don’t have to give our opinion in every situation, rather we should provide our support in whatever our loved ones are going through.
  3. Deal with Stress Together: Stress is a catalyst for negative emotions. When one thing goes wrong, so does everything else, as it would seem. This takes a toll on everyone involved and is completely unavoidable. The best way to handle it is together, with open lines of communication and compassion.
  4. Take Care of Yourself: In a relationship, both parties have to work on fixing each other’s issues together. Yet, sometimes we get so involved with helping those around us, we forget to take care of our needs. Love and partnership helps in making yourself a better person, but self-care is still necessary for long term mental health.
  5. Emotions are Handled Differently: Depending on how a person was raised and their genetic make-up, humans all express themselves in their own ways. As you spend more time with someone, you’ll notice what their ticks are, based on what they’re feeling. Through observation before action, a person can infer a situation by a person’s body language.

Men release less Oxycontin than women when they are stressed, meaning they have a stronger reaction from both cortisol and epinephrine. [Women nurture] those around them in an effort to both protect themselves and their young. Men [are] more likely to have the “fight or flight” response when it comes to stress – either repressing their emotions and trying to escape the situation, or fighting back.

HOW TO HANDLE YOUR PARTNER’S STRESS Posted by: Team Tony

We are flawed, imperfect beings with irrational emotions, and intellectual minds. The emotional rock in a relationship is handed back and forth. Sometimes, you’ll be the one that needs a shoulder to lean on. Other times, you’ll be the shoulder that is leaned upon. Beyond physical pleasure, the joy and beauty in being with another person is having someone to go through it all, together.

Adulthood and the Death of Youth

Coming of age is a staple theme in the modern day of storytelling. Everyone has a story from back in the day, and it’s commonly portrayed in literature and TV. Something that universally unites us as humans is witnessing our life change overnight and facing the price of freedom known as responsibility.

Once upon a time, we all had a dream. When someone asked us as a child what we wanted to be, we said and array of things: doctor, vet, pilot, fireman, actor, musician, etc. For many, getting older meant letting go of said dreams and facing reality. When do we become adults? Is it when we’re financially stable, married, have children, or all of the above?

[According to new research by CBS’ TV ratings guru David Poltrack and Nielsen Catalina Solutions], 30 happens to be the age at which millennials tend to self-identify as adults.

Millennials Don’t Consider Themselves Adults Until 30, Researcher Says byTony Maglio 

Way back when, boys and girls were considered adults at the age of twelve and thirteen. If you’ve read or seen The Lord of the Rings, the fantasy race of Hobbits reach adulthood at the age of 33. Who knew J.R.R. Tolkien could foresee where human development was headed?

But, it is the millenial parents who have convinced us that we aren’t adults. From financial support to constant approval, the Baby Boomers (born between 1946 and 1964) are constantly involved in their children’s adult lives.

We all have or have known a parent who had a hand in their child’s homework, always cleaned up after them, took care of situations for them, or constantly reminded them of things they were capable of handling on their own. In these parents’ eyes, they were and still are doing what’s best for their children. What suffers is the child’s on confidence in handling themselves as an adult.

As a result of not being babied or supervised themselves as children, as well as cultural shifts in parenting norms through the progression of technology, these generations overcompensated in their involvement with their Millennial children.

How Baby Boomer Parents Molded the Millennial Generation by Ilana Bodker

At 25, there are other young adults I know who don’t know how to do taxes, how to change a tire, cut the grass, or even use the right settings on the laundry machine. Instead of figuring this stuff out on our own, the first thing we do is call our parents and ask for help. These are the same parents who lecture us about how we need to “grow up.”

For me, adulthood is being financially and emotionally independent. Even with your parents, taking someone else’s money comes with a price. Letting go of the emotional reliance we have with our parents from birth is the only way to develop a relationship and family of your own.

Being young is liberating and fun in it’s own way, but it isn’t truly free. Getting stuck between adulthood and adolescence is stressful, and takes a toll on our mental health. I used to be scared of being an adult and controlling my own outcome, because I’d probably mess it up. It’s nothing to be scared of, adults fail all the time going after their dream. Adults make mistakes they have to fix. Adults figure it out on their own. We all have the same ability to take control of our own life.

Working on Strength and Weakness

When we’re asked what our strengths are, we immediately consider what we’re good at, yet just because we’re good at something doesn’t mean it’s our strength. A strength is something that you do because you thoroughly enjoy it, time passes by without looking at the clock. Let’s say, you’re good at Excel and Office software. It doesn’t mean your strength is in Excel and Office, that’s simply a skill.

Strengths can take time and you may not immediately be good at them, but they are something that you love. Most resolutions and goals centralized around working on weakness. For instance, “I’m not that outgoing, I’m going to work on talking to more people.” We focus on the weakness and at some point, we can be proficient in them, but if it isn’t something we do like to do, it can be draining and we’re constantly wondering when it’ll be over.

It doesn’t matter where you are in life, it’s time to stop suffering. Many of us go through job after job, searching in what we know. Each day, it wears down, taking a piece of us with it until we become a angry at the world, perpetually unhappy and mean.

You can be mediocre at many things, or proficient in a couples things you’re passionate about. Work on your weakness, but focus on your strength. Split your time: 30% on weakness, and 70% on strength. Take the time out of your day, write out your interest, delve into your dreams, figure out if what you’re doing now is what you really want to be doing. If so, keep at it. If not, change it.

We are all born in the land of opportunity. We should take advantage of that. Sure, it’s scary to change a career or to move to a different state, but if you keep waiting until the right chance to make your own way, it’ll never come. There will always be a reason not to do something.

We all deserve to go after what we want in life, despite what others tell us we should or should not do. We’re in control of our life, and we dictate the outcome. Any path we take to achieving out goals is going to have challenges along the way, but it’s all worth fighting for. Our future is worth fighting for.