Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Antidotes to Puffery

There are times when I feel like patting myself on the back for the great job I've done at something. Resisting this temptation is very, very hard for me. I love having my ego stroked. And if no one's stroking me? Well, I conclude, I have two hands and can stroke myself, thankyouverymuch.

Being silently proud that you've done good is, according to Deshung Rinpoche, a good thing, as it reinforces good habits within yourself. But there's a distinction between pride and puffery. For me, that line is so faded, it's as if no one had ever drawn it. For me, pride becomes puffery when I want other people to know what I've done. Too often, it doesn't feel like enough to know that I stuck to my ethical principles. I want to advertise just how ethical I am to anyone within earshot! I do and show things to people just for the express purpose of getting positive feedback. That's the unhealthful habit I'm attempting to break.

When I find myself engaging in puffery, I remind myself of the following:
Do you battle puffery in your life? How do you defeat it?

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