You see them every day, messages and signs that go beyond self empowerment and stretch into the realm of self idolization. “I’m a winner,” Charlie Sheen ranted, and Napoleon Bonaparte lowered the crown upon his own head.
I do not beat my chest, nor claim that I am the best, at anything. I do not sit down thinking that I am going to write America’s next great novel. For all the exclamations of little kittens hanging from precarious places that the strength to persevere comes from within, greatness is a gift that comes from the outside.
Self adulation must be tempered with an acceptance of reality. Shakespear said, “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have it thrust upon them.” Born to greatness is a folly, for even those born into high position can bring it down. Some who strive for it may never achieve it, and those who achieve it do not always maintain it. But those who find it thrust or bestowed upon them though they did not seek it, generally they are the more worthy.
Some will say that you cannot let others determine your worth. However, without the measure of those you touch, your value cannot be determined.
You will not see me proclaim that I am a winner. I will do what I can, as best as my flawed self will allow at that moment in time. To make pretense that my efforts exceed all others is at best self delusion. I will not crown myself.