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Who else has trouble with empathy and pride? I think the truth is that we all do at times. Sometimes we get impatient with the people around us, sometimes we don’t want to ask for help and we’re not interested in helping. We have all looked down on others and found ourselves superior in our own minds on occasion.

Some people might find themselves having a more difficult time with this, especially if they are competitive and high achieving. If you can count yourself among this group, that’s all right. But here are some tips to build our humility, patience and empathy.

Self-reflection

Take some time with yourself, think about what you’re struggling with and why. Journaling can be a great way to get down some thoughts. Self-reflection can be something you practise throughout the day as well, simply by asking yourself questions; “How do my actions make others feel?” “Why do I feel this way?” “How can I improve?”

Find a mentor

Finding a person you trust to listen to your struggles and give thoughtful and honest advice can change your life. You can disclose things happening in your life that you might not be able to tell you, friends or family. Getting another set of eyes on your life can help you see your own blind spots, keep you in check and offer encouragement when you feel discouraged.

Be a mentor

I was establishing a sandpit for my grandkids and enlisted them to help me by using the bubble level to see if the foundation was even. They were telling me to go up or down, up or down, by watching the bubble. It would have been quicker and simpler on my own, obviously, and I was perfectly able to do it alone, but there is joy in passing on skill and developing someone else. Children are a great way to practise this. In Christian leadership, to do it yourself because you can do it better comes across as arrogant and denies others an opportunity for learning.

Galatians 5:25-26 says: 25 Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. 26 Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.

The key to not being conceited or proud is to follow the Spirit’s lead; He will also guide you to see value in others, contributions they make, and reveal to you, your need of relationship and community. So take a minute to reflect today: Who is the Spirit leading you to?

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