Is pride unhealthy

8 key differences between healthy and unhealthy pride

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I've always viewed pride as a healthy human trait that has a positive impact on the self; motivation, trust, respect, and acceptance. But obviously the Bible sees it differently and calls it one of the 7 deadly sins.

So could there be a "bad pride" - but also a "good pride" if not all of the negative connotations of the former are absent? Could pride also exist along a continuum? Pride is positive to some extent, but is it bad beyond that? Or could be bad pride - let's call it "unhealthy pride" - none excess of "healthy pride" (or "too much of a good thing"), but a different facet of personality as a whole?

Personally, I think there are two different ones species rather of pride than Degree of pride. In this post, I'm going to draw some sharp contrasts between these two types.



Ironically, pride could be compared to a fantastic double-edged sword, with a harmless rubber point on one end and a destructive, razor-sharp blade on the other. If you stick to this metaphor, the stinging side with the sharp edge can easily "cut" others - and thus violate relationships to the point where they are irreparable.

Let us examine in detail the clear differences between healthy and unhealthy pride that are all too often overlooked in literature. While good and bad pride are fundamental aspects of the human personality, they really don't get as critical attention as they deserve. And the fact that the term is so often applied to one type of pride or another without the author specifically specifying which type is being referred to clearly shows how important - for the sake of clarity - they are clearly distinguished from one another .

As Thomas Scheff, Ph.D., emphasizes (in his Buffalo Social Service Sisters post, "Real pride does NOT go before the fall": "The English language in particular confuses authentic pride with what could be described as false pride or selfishness. . . [and] to the point that it tarnishes the positive meaning of pride. "

So here are 8 main characteristics of this personality trait that can be considered healthy (or, as often called, true, authentic, or Original-), against the form of pride that is regularly viewed as unhealthy (or not correct, Bad, arrogant, or Hubristian). And I should add that as much as I have tried to distinguish these differences from one another, there is considerable overlap between them. Some descriptions may fit a different category than the one I put them into (somewhat arbitrarily).



1. Healthy pride is about self-confidence. This reflects an intrinsically motivating “can” attitude. Those with such pride find their accomplishments very satisfying and firmly believe that "nothing is as successful as success". The joy that has been brought to them by achieving things or simply dealing with them effectively makes them strive to pursue individual achievements.

However, people with unhealthy pride can be equally stimulated to success, but the dynamics that determine their motivation differ markedly. You are excessive hazards to be successful - and repeat this because they cannot really internalize individual triumphs. If they want to hold on to their ultimately weak self-confidence, they have to constantly "prove" themselves - not only to themselves, but also to others.

The reason for their constant struggles is that deep in the self-doubt or feelings of shame that plagued most of them as they grew up, they nonetheless continue to bother them - though below the surface -. As compensation (or actually, Over-Compensation), your brand of confidence will likely come across as cocky, or "bullheadedly" confident. And that's pronounced reaction whereupon psychoanalysts as "narcissistic hurt" (ie that they feel loved by their caregivers not just for who they are, but only for the quality of their performance - which normally had to be superlative).

2. Healthy pride is a positive concept of self-esteem and is based on a story in which personal effort and expenditure of energy led to success. A major factor in the performance of such individuals is that they are not satisfied with mediocre performance and are more likely to try to get the best out of them. Therefore, their self-esteem is considered "deserved".

This contrasts with unhealthy pride, which is an overly favorable self-assessment based on giving yourself too much appreciation for accomplishments that are usually modest. Such an overestimation of one's own skills or successes can also refer to the fact that one ascribes to oneself successes that also (or more) belong to others who are involved in a task or project that has been successfully completed.

People with healthy pride feel really good. And that explains why such pride is routinely associated with high (though not) artificially high) self esteem. Compare this to the heightened self-esteem of those with unhealthy pride, which is ultimately wrong in that it becomes puffed up and easily pierced by criticism - which, in turn, can lead to greatly exaggerated defense of people's anger or anger.

There is an uncertainty hidden beneath all of their superiority professions that makes it virtually impossible for them to admit when they are wrong or to apologize - and all too easy for them to feel attacked by others. (In this regard, the reader may want to see an earlier post of mine titled "Our Egos: Do They Need To Be Strengthened Or Shrunk?" distinguish unhealthy Diversity of pride.)

3. Healthy pride is expressed in an assertive fashion, and it is most often conveyed implicitly. It is a calm, confident confirmation of your own abilities. On the contrary, unhealthy pride is a far more aggressive - and explicit - explanation not of competence as such, but of personal superiority. It often consists of looking down on others or Putt You are dejected, while healthy pride is not about announcing supremacy or "specialty", but simply demonstrating a person's authentic abilities.

It follows, of course, that people with healthy pride have far more satisfying and fulfilling relationships than people with unhealthy manners because they prefer to work With others don't against You. They are more cooperative, trusting and humble in dealing, but also much more friendly and pleasant - vs. dogmatic, dictatorial, defensive and aloof like those with unhealthy pride.

4. Closely related to the above, healthy pride has nothing to do with comparing oneself favorably (and often unfairly) to others, while a person with unhealthy pride regularly brags about their (often exaggerated) accomplishments. "Look what I. did! "could be her words or feelings, with the clear implication that no one is otherwise could possibly have done something like that or did it somewhere as well. For them, it's not about doing their best, it's about doing things better than anyone else.

On the contrary, someone with healthy pride could say, “I feel really good that I was ready to do this, and it turned out much better than I expected” - maybe even adding, “I believe not that I could have done it myself, so I have to acknowledge not only those who came before me, but also those who made specific suggestions to me while I was still learning how to do it. "

5. When Jessica Tracy, Ph.D. observed in her bookAre proud of it (2016) is healthy pride authentic. It's an accurate, realistic estimate of one's ability, while what Tracy and other scholars refer to as "Hubristian" pride smells like hyperbolic or skewed claims about one's ability. As such, people with this "false" pride are given to brag and brag about and exemplify dishonesty, arrogance and conceit. This self-enlargement - or better, Grandiosity- is, in fact, at the heart of what most professionals consider highlighting a Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

Furthermore, such narcissists may feel compelled to try things beyond their ability to achieve them because they require so much the admiration that comes from doing something that others may not even dare to do. And this is one reason why people with unhealthy pride are more likely to fail in their (overly ambitious) efforts than people with healthier, more realistic, and more "restrained" pride. Driven narcissistically to realize their supposed perfection, their better judgment is impaired - as is the acceptance of their innate limits.

6. According to experts, healthy pride relates to a person's pro-social behavior (ist.g., see Kaufman, 2012). On the contrary, unhealthy pride is related to what is commonly viewed as antagonistic, antisocial, or illegal. The ex-person encourages and motivates others, especially since they are likely to say, "If I can do this, so can you!" But one endowed (plagued?) With unhealthy pride would mean - or even proclaim - that what they did could just have been done by them and actively discourage others from following their example. As competitive as they are, they would much rather be others Not compete with them.

Authoritarian personalities, unfortunately so often in leadership positions, are essentially bullies. Provided they know more than anyone else, their morally short-sighted perspective is marked by complacent self-righteousness and a belief that only they have the power - or again. superiority- to be in control of the life of others. And all too often their command leads them to take on an extremely self-improving role that their unruly and (I might add)insatiable Ego.

7. People of healthy pride motivate and inspire others to take their lead and join them. They do not "desire" their successes so much as to show a desire to share them. As such, they are drawn to others because they rarely feel threatened or intimidated in their society.

Compare this to people with unhealthy pride who tend to "rule" others. You don’t do it want to share their successes, but to do everything possible to ensure that no one “steps in” them. In their general hostility towards others, they are far more likely to initiate lawsuits against anyone they suspect is "stealing" what is exclusively theirs. When they gain followers, it is mainly because others are manipulated, intimidated, or forced to follow them.

8. After all, unlike the unhealthy variety, healthy pride is not self-centered. And that's why those with such pride can to take Proud not only of their own achievements, but also of those of others. They can be proud of their children, their spouse, their parents, friends, students -someone whom they identify to show the ability to advance themselves or others by doing their best.

Plus, they'd never be proud of someone just because they won the lottery because that would just be a matter of luck. But for anyone who is struggling to overcome an obstacle or who has made sacrifices to do something remarkable The would be cause for them to be proud ...and to celebrate the laudatory human potential to transcend through sheer willpower and determination that are the typical deterrents to accomplishing something truly extraordinary.

Since those with unhealthy pride usually have narcissistic personalities, here are some complementary posts I have published about such individuals:

© 2016 Leon F. Seltzer, Ph.D. All rights reserved.

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