The Suber Report: On Being Humble
I don’t know what “humble” means nor do I ever want to become familiar.
If you’ve ever felt oppressed by the obligation to downplay your talents, if you have ever accomplished something great and kept it to yourself, or even if you pride yourself on being a humble person – this post is for you.
Growing up my parents told me I could do anything I set my mind to. At eight years old I enrolled in summer classes at the local university for fashion illustration and design, dead-set on becoming a fashion designer. When the instructors praised my sketches for their detail and refinement, I didn’t blink because I agreed that they were great.
Studying fashion was all that occupied my time outside of school and sports. Every document from first to fifth grade that asks “what do you want to be when you grow up?” has two neatly-written words next to it – “Fashion Designer.” I practiced sketching, I took sewing classes, I read as many books as I could, and I watched every fashion show to make my dreams a reality. So accepting the praise for my work didn’t seem unnatural.
I have never felt, nor do I feel to this day, that recognizing potential or realized accomplishments is a bad thing. What does one have to gain by not basking in the light of their achievements? The moment is fleeting regardless.
Personally, I relate most to outspoken leaders like Kanye West and Sean “Diddy” Combs. They understand that thoughts become things. Examining this a bit closer, what you say and the energy that you put out becomes your reality. I would be doing you a disservice if I told you to be quiet about how amazing you are, celebrate in silence, or worse yet don’t celebrate at all.
To me humble means being small, living in past failures, or being complacent. I don’t believe in wanting a big life and pretending to want a small one. I will not let you work so hard in life only to act as if you achieved success by chance or that you are undeserving. That is not my approach to life.
I feel that I am big enough just by being me. My successes are to be celebrated and I take full ownership of them. When asked what is next for me I will tell you I’m onto bigger things, that it will be great, more fabulous than the last move. Does that make me a bad person? No.
The only people who tell you to be humble are the ones who want to be better than you. Or maybe they were afraid to reach as high as you dare. These people are dangerous, they want you to stay low, comfortable, plain. I know how hard it can be to tune these people out, but no one who is truly successful will want you to even appear as anything less than the biggest and best version of yourself.
I am forever grateful for everyone and everything in my life, but I’ll be damned if I keep quiet about it.