Humility and modesty involve letting one’s strengths and accomplishments speak for themselves. Individuals with this strength do not need to have low self-esteem, but merely avoid seeking the spotlight and regarding themselves as better than others. Humble people are honest with themselves about their own limitations and the fallibility of their own opinions, and are open to advice and assistance from others.
How to demonstrate this Character Strength:
Movies: Gandhi (1982), Little Buddha (1994)
Music: Everything Now (Arcade Fire), I Don’t Wanna Live Forever (Zayn Malik and Taylor Swift), Homemade Dynamite (Lorde), The Lure of the Sea (Beautiful South), Modesty Song (Hume), Not Giving In (Rudimental ft. John Newman & Alex Clare)
Suggested strategies that correlate with this strength:
- Resist showing off accomplishments for a week and notice the changes in your interpersonal relationships
- At the end of each day, identify something you did to impress people or put on a show. Resolve not to do it again,
- Resist showing off if you notice that you are better than someone else.
- Resist showing off when others show off.
- Notice if you speak more than others in a group situation
- Dress and speak modestly
- Compliment sincerely if you find someone is authentic and better than you in some ways.
- Use environmental resources modestly (use recycled products, limit use of products which harm the environment etc)
- Admit your mistakes and apologise even to those who are younger than you.
- Use your sexual energies modestly
- Ask a trusted friend for honest feedback about your weaknesses.
Remember, when you are doing something in life that uses your strengths, it will strengthen you. When you are doing something in life that requires you to use your lower strengths, or weaknesses, it will weaken you. You can use your strengths to accommodate for your weaknesses.
By monitoring the above, you will be able to catch when there is an incongruence in this personal strength. An incongruence will compromise you and cause inner conflict, so the above will help you keep on the right track.
Niemiec, R. M, 2017, Character Strengths Interventions, Hogrefe, Boston
Tayyab, R., Anjum, A., 2005, 340 Ways to Use VIA Character Strengths, University of Pennsylvania