IMHO: Staying Humble in Opinions
A popular acronym among social media experts is IMHO: In My Humble Opinion. Have you noticed that whatever statement follows this declaration of deference is an absolute assertion of acumen that accompanies abrupt admission of acute arrogance? 😳
As confusing as it may be, failing to discern opinion from legitimate facts and truth is perhaps the most effective way to degrade the quality of education and society's ability to thrive. How can trust exist without a shared understanding of truth and our reality?
That void makes it impossible to deal with our core issues—especially within the emotionally charged ecosystem that educators work within. It's our abiding devotion to knowledge, truth, and wisdom that enables fulfillment of this noble calling to educate, with self-discipline and humility core to our expertise.
Nothing is more deceitful than the appearance of humility. It is often only carelessness of opinion, and sometimes an indirect boast.
— Jane Austen
The Highly Effective Educator knows and is committed to the mission! They are passionate about it and work hard for the goals and desired results. Such passion for learning is not just about personal development— it also leads to being an excellent role model for colleagues, students, parents, and others in the community.
That level of excellence isn't achieved without genuine humility.
Humility is most evident in ...
... a thankful and teachable spirit.
... a reverence for a greater purpose.
... a commitment to the greater good.
Humility teaches us that just because we think it or feel it doesn't mean it's true.
Counterfeit humility is often a disguise for inner struggles with unresolved, more profound issues. Insecurities and immaturity choke off pathways to growth. We unwittingly contribute to the difficulty when we value voice over veracity and virtue.
No caveats can consistently camouflage gaps in our integrity, nor can they disguise some expressions of opinion as anything other than conjecture clouded by inevitable bias. Authenticity can be evaluated in the space between what we profess to believe and the reality other people experience daily through our words, habits, and decisions.
What creates those gaps in our perception? Why are we so easily deceived into believing and repeating false narratives?
One reason is referred to as source confusion, where we inadvertently mistake memories as coming from somewhere else. Subtle blips in memory frequently occur, confusing how we remember faces, places, and events. This can cause damaging misinformation and misidentification, especially when it becomes systemic.
Humility is the foundation of all the other virtues hence,
in the soul in which this virtue does not exist there
cannot be any other virtue except in mere appearance.
— Saint Augustine
The privilege of the unique influence educators wield motivates us to see people and situations differently, staying humble in opinions and carefully attuned to how our words impact each heart, mind, and spirit.
That's why we listen far more often than we talk and certainly exercise restraint when given the opportunity to express viewpoints in various forums and media.
Be genuinely humble in opinions, my friend, remembering we have great power in our words.