I have noticed a trend when people have gotten a promotion at a new job, achieved a great milestone or won an award for the hard work they have done. The person or people that have been on the receiving end, the people that have put in the work to get the promotion or win the award, the same people who overcame some type of obstacle to get where they are, are immediately being given advice. They are given advice that they have not asked for and, in some cases, they are given advice that does not apply to them. They are being mentored by people who were not asked to be in that role. What advice is being given? What mentorship is being offered? You have heard it, and you may have said it yourself. Congratulations! Which is followed up by the statement be humble (sometimes directly and sometimes indirectly). Now don’t get me wrong. Being humble is good advice but let’s face it. When good-hearted people are the ones who are being celebrated and you know their humility is a part of how they have gotten to this phase of their career, why would you tell them that? Especially when they are in the celebratory stages of their accomplishment. These people have worked hard for this moment. You don’t know the struggle they faced to get to this point. You don’t know what personal issues they have going on behind the scenes that they survived to make it here. They are happy, they feel accomplished, they are proud of what they have achieved and the support they have been given only to for you to offer the unsolicited advice of Be Humble.
Personally, I have been given this advice by some people and it has been accepted but only I asked them for it. Those who felt the need to tell me to be humble when I didn’t ask for advice were usually people who were not saying it from a pure place. You can tell it is not from a pure place based on their stories of achievement or the way they interact with you.
We have to stop telling people to be humble. To be honest that isn’t our place. I went to a women’s empowerment event and there was a guest speaker named Christian Ogba. She was dope from the time she hit the stage until the end of her presentation. While speaking, she dropped a couple of gems. The gems that I always remember in particular are 1. “My humble ain’t your humble”. 2. “When you are telling someone to be humble, you are not recognizing where they came from, where they organized their time and what the accomplishment literally means to them.” I walked away from that event with a new outlook on telling people to be humble. In most cases, we don’t mean any harm by those two words, but we have to ask ourselves is it necessary at this moment to tell someone that? If it is, that is a conversation we can have at a later time. Lastly, we have to stop downplaying how dope we are. If we don’t celebrate how dope we are and what we bring to the table, why should we expect anyone else to? I used to tell people to be humble with a hint of Kanye, I am sure that you have seen the meme in the past…Well, I don’t tell people that anymore for a few reasons but that a completely different blog post that I am sure I will l never publish (insert side eye)…Now I just tell people to “Own Their Magic” and continue to “Be a Dope Soul”.
You are out there doing dope things, continue to be unapologetically you, walk with your head held high. Embrace who you are and your accomplishments and live in the moment(s). You deserve it! The only “Be Humble” you should recognize is the song by Kendrick Lamar because it is catchy. Own Your Magic Sis, and as always continue to be a Dope Soul!