Choosing Humility over Humiliation Episode #74

Aaron McHugh


It is a fine line between choosing humility over humiliation.  I use the phrase “Eating Humble Pie” when I feel the gravitational pull to choose humiliation over humility. I recorded this podcast after walking out of a CrossFit class with my tail narrowly tucked between my legs. I got worked. Everyone in the class was ahead of me. I expected the CrossFit fanatics to beat me. I even expect some of the hundred pound women to kick my xxx. Unexpectedly, even the new skinny guy left me in the dust.

Click to Listen Choosing Humility over Humiliation

Stand UP Paddle at Dana Point CA sunset fading
Stand UP Paddle at Dana Point CA sunset fading


As I drove away in my car, I recorded this confession. I can’t stand being last. It reminds me of when I was in ninth grade trying out for the football team. My best friend was the quarterback and he convinced me to join the team. It was brutal. I was skinny and small. During face-off drills the coach would put me up against the heaviest-biggest-angriest kid just to demoralize me. I’m pretty sure he was trying to get me to quit. Thank God, I got a diagnosed case of tendinitis. I became the team manager instead. In my mind, I retained some level of dignity. However, I’m not sure the rest of the team saw it that way. Luckily my buddy Chad stuck up for me when other guys would try and give me crap.

Decades later, I’ve learned that there is value in being last, being the novice, and being uncomfortable with my perception of myself. I want a life that is large and expansive, not small and safe. So I risk. CrossFit, surfing, long boarding, snowboarding and self-publishing are areas where I am choosing to press-in and push past the temptation to give-up or quite. Whether the perception of underperformance is from within or when I compare myself to others, I don’t like it. However, I dislike playing it safe MORE THAN I dislike the taste of humble pie.

I’m choosing humility because humiliation is a choice that is within my control.

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