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  1. #1
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    Default How to deal with being arrogant?

    I was watching a movie and I realized I really didn't want to be like a certain character...(Kevin, Pam's ex boyfriend in Meet the Parents for those of you who are interested...lol). I didn't really hate the character, I just didn't want to be like him.

    Which got me to thinking..why? What's wrong with him? (or perhaps more accurately why do I perceive him as being someone I wouldn't want to emulate?)

    Well..after some thought..I realized it's because Kevin represented "perfection". So why didn't Pam end up with Kevin? Probably because theoretically perfect doesn't actually equate to anything despite you wanting it to...that's why even though Kevin was theoretically perfect..he wasn't actually perfect (at least for her).

    So..what about Kevin was "not perfect" in her eyes? And the answer I got was slightly surprising to me..it's that he never did or said anything to show that although Pam thought he was perfect..he himself didn't..(I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he knew he wasn't perfect..he just couldn't really express that to Pam in a manner in which she could understand..but that's a whole other tangent..)

    So I resented the "fact" (within this context..again another tangent) that he couldn't express his imperfectness in a way that could be understood by her.

    Realizing that this was probably all in my head (anyone else pick this up from the movie?) I was probably projecting something I saw in myself onto a fictional character. I was either projecting my frustration at not being able to effectively communicate my imperfectness to others...or my belief that I am not imperfect (which I would call arrogance).

    The first one I can deal with. I can get better at expressing what I want to express. The second one scares me to death. What if I am arrogant? What if I deep down I do believe that I am not imperfect?

    Then I realized something. I do. I am arrogant. I do think that on some level I am imperfect. I do believe that on some level I am perfect. I refuse to not to.

    So..given that I am unwilling to change these beliefs..(which is true)..because I genuinely think they can be true..and are true all the of time for me..and at the same time never true..) how do I deal with the realization that I am not imperfect?

    Using the whole double think concept..
    I hold these things as true..

    1) I am not imperfect.
    2) I am not perfect.
    3) I am both perfect and imperfect.

    I can deal with both 2 and 3 in various contexts of my life (at least I hope so..) but I guess I think I might not be dealing with the first one very effectively. Any advice? (except for stop watching movies and psychoanalyzing the shit out of them..)(seriously I would say that is my by far my biggest indulgence..looking to tear myself apart in any way I can..including sappy old comedies..)lol

    oh and I realize that "not imperfect" can be an annoying thing to try to understand..but I don't want to use "perfect" because I don't think that "not imperfect" is the same as "perfect". It can be..but in this case I really don't think it is..

  2. #2
    Senior Member Beargryllz's Avatar
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    Perfection is complacency. Disregard the notion that complacency is something to strive for at the expense of other fine things in life. We can always better ourselves, therefore we are never perfect. Being unable to improve is a handicap.

  3. #3
    Honor Thy Inferior Such Irony's Avatar
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    I'm not arrogant and I feel all the more superior for it.
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  4. #4
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    Why would I need a way to deal with my arrogance? For me it's a virtue, not a vice.

  5. #5
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    ^ I guess I fear that my arrogance will hinder me in my attempts to figure things out.

    I'm not arrogant and I feel all the more superior for it.
    But should you? Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose?

  6. #6
    Certified Sausage Smoker Elfboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savage Idealist View Post
    Why would I need a way to deal with my arrogance? For me it's a virtue, not a vice.
    + over 9000

  7. #7
    Senior Member wildcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savage Idealist View Post
    Why would I need a way to deal with my arrogance? For me it's a virtue, not a vice.
    My friend said to me:
    You are an odious, repellent, repulsive person. Nobody asks you to change. Be obnoxious. Be what you are.
    He was kind.
    But I had not planned to change.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mkenya View Post
    [...]I can deal with both 2 and 3 in various contexts of my life (at least I hope so..) but I guess I think I might not be dealing with the first one very effectively. Any advice? (except for stop watching movies and psychoanalyzing the shit out of them..)(seriously I would say that is my by far my biggest indulgence..looking to tear myself apart in any way I can..including sappy old comedies..)lol.[...]
    Off the top of my head, I would say that arrogance taken to the extreme would amount to total self-involvement and a total lack of interest in the concerns of others.

    An example of this extreme might be someone who pursues a personal agenda or ideal to the point of not caring or noticing how it affects others. I don't remember Pam's ex-bf from the movie. But a boyfriend who is "perfect" might be deemed self-involved if he's so anal retentive about achieving "the perfect life" (as he defines it) that he becomes oblivious to any needs or concerns of his girlfriend that run contrary to his agenda. To put it another way, too much slavishness to a personal agenda may be seen as rigidity (arrogance) and an unwillingness to acknowledge the needs/concerns of others.

    The usual way to demonstrate a little humility (as an antidote to excessive arrogance), is to show interest in the lives of others. And the best way to show interest is usually to draw other people out in conversation and listen to them. If small talk isn't your thing, then a simple exercise should help: When chatting with someone and the conversation lags, think of the last sentence they said, pick out one of the nouns, and ask them something about that noun. It's a fun intellectual game, and it hones your socializing skills.

    Of course, the opposite extreme would be an excess of humility: It would be the point at which you put a great deal of weight on the needs and agendas of others and little or none on your own needs or concerns. The cure for this particular extreme would be to sit down and do a self-inventory, figure out some needs of your own that need meeting, and set personal boundaries in such a way that you reject or roll back any excessive demands of others on your time (learn to say "no") and thus carve out some space and time for yourself and your own needs.

    To sum up: Ideally you want to find a balance between the extremes of arrogance and humility, and you want to develop the tools by which you regulate and maintain that balance. If you tend toward too much self-involvement (the extreme of arrogance), then you should try to take an interest in others and allow them to make legitimate demands on your time and attention. IOW, lower the boundaries a bit and let people into your life. On the other hand, if you tend toward being too indulgent toward others (the extreme of humility), then you should work on setting personal boundaries and indulging your own legitimate needs or developing your own personal projects/agenda. IOW, raise the boundaries a bit in the interests of self-development.

  9. #9
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FineLine View Post
    To sum up: Ideally you want to find a balance between the extremes of arrogance and humility, and you want to develop the tools by which you regulate and maintain that balance. If you tend toward too much self-involvement (the extreme of arrogance), then you should try to take an interest in others and allow them to make legitimate demands on your time and attention. IOW, lower the boundaries a bit and let people into your life. On the other hand, if you tend toward being too indulgent toward others (the extreme of humility), then you should work on setting personal boundaries and indulging your own legitimate needs or developing your own personal projects/agenda. IOW, raise the boundaries a bit in the interests of self-development.
    I like this explanation. It's good!

    Unfortunately it also means I'm too arrogant and should try to take an interest in others. Now, if I can just remember where I left that particular skillset. *tries to remember*
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

  10. #10
    nee andante bechimo's Avatar
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    What is arrogance? It has connotations of over-confidence in one's abilities rather than belief in one's perfection, although the latter might also be part of the equation.

    I'd avoid the perfection angle since it leads to narcissism. But to self-deprecate so others feel better about themselves is manipulative, since it's a form of solicition for validation.

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