5. Feb, 2020

Is Arrogance Good For Anything?

The standard dictionary definition of ‘arrogant’ is not too helpful and most people use the word to describe someone who appears to possess more subject knowledge than they do.

Depending on which way you are facing, you may hold the view that someone else is being arrogant or that someone else thinks you are being arrogant.

The 3-types of Arrogance:

1)    Belief Arrogance ~ exists in someone before they have demonstrated knowledge or understanding. They have a ‘belief’ in their independent advantage and may even hold a misguided understanding when they are proven incorrect. Belief arrogance is usually founded upon an inflated *ego and used as a smokescreen to hide embarrassment. Belief arrogance is used as a defence when someone fears a more knowledgeable person. Though it is natural to be confident in the things we believe, it makes sense to remain open minded to sincere discussion.

2)    Crowing Arrogance ~ manifests when someone with correct knowledge or understanding uses an opportunity to put-down someone proven incorrect. Crowing arrogance is a weapon to maintain an air of superiority or to promote social position. Crowing arrogance is used to belittle the emotionally vulnerable. Crowing arrogance can have an adverse effect on the authenticity of the person doing the crowing as onlookers view this behaviour as cowardly, unfair and unkind. Consequently, crowing arrogance often backfires to downgrade the crowing individual’s social position.

3)    Perceived Arrogance ~ occurs when another person’s behaviour is viewed as arrogant when in fact, it is not. When proved incorrect in knowledge or understanding it is natural to feel inferior or that your social position is under attack. To rescue this, you may take pot-shots at the person who has been proven correct in an attempt to redress the social balance. Emotionally immature people dislike being corrected and use perceived arrogance as a means of shoring up their emotional inadequacy, even to the point of reinforcing their belief in their own incorrect knowledge or understanding.

Questions Are the Answers ~ Socratic Positioning

Forcing even correct knowledge or understanding upon someone tends not to win their heart and mind! When sure of your understanding of a subject or fact it is highly effective to ask relevant questions allowing the other person to discover for themselves the truth of the matter.

Try opening your conversation with, “What is your attitude toward …?” then, listen attentively to each reply so you can progress with more self-discovery questions like, “What would be the benefit/consequence of that outcome?” Ultimately you may agree mutually beneficial action following the question, “Is that what you want?”

Asking discovery questions seeks a Win/Win ~ or No Deal outcome. This means the person on their personal journey of discovery will accept greater understanding and knowledge ~ or agree to disagree, agreeably (this for another paper).

If you are the one disagreeing, agreeably pay particular attention to your ‘educator’ and hear yourself saying, 'You're right. Thanks, I hadn’t thought of it that way'. Or,“I didn’t know that. May I check it out and get back to you?”

To discuss this paper, call John on 0044 (0)7900 251258 or email john@uetp.co.uk

*a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance.