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5 Ways Your Pride Is Damaging Your Relationships

Love & Relationships

There's someone who I used to be really close with who taught me a very valuable lesson. One day, while we were discussing what we thought our core character flaws were (I said mine were impatience and fear), they told me that they know they are arrogant and prideful. However, because they are also smart, funny, generous, talented, and pretty friendly, I didn't give those two words as much attention as I should have.


And boy, I really should have. Over the course of our very unique friendship, I must say that when things were good between us, they were uncannily beautiful. But boy oh boy, when things were bad, the mixture of my impatience and fear along with their arrogance and pride made for the perfect storm that devastated feelings and ultimately destroyed our connection.

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Maybe one day, I'll get into how impatience and fear bring about their own set of complications when you're trying to build something with someone. For now, though, let's get into what pride not only can do but usually does do to relationships.

I'll start with this. One day, while laying in bed, I binged watched a few episodes of Divorce Court Before the Vows on YouTube. Something that Judge Lynn Toler said to one of the couples stood out—"You are the biggest problem you've got." If I were to define what pride can do, that's pretty much it in a nutshell. It can cause you to become the biggest problem you have. Shoot, even the Bible co-signs on it: "Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall." (Proverbs 16:18—NKJV)

Unfortunately, a lot of us are SO PRIDEFUL that we don't even recognize what it's doing to us and those around us. But if what I'm sharing is tugging at you, even just a little bit, here are some pretty telling signs that your pride is costing you…a lot. Even if you don't see clear evidence of it…yet.

How Your Pride Is Ruining Your Relationship

1.You (Think You) Are Always Right

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Don't. Get. Me. Started. It's truly an epidemic, the amount of people who don't want relationships; they want teacher/student dynamics where they are always instructing someone else on what they need to do with their lives.

If I were to raise my hand in any portion of this article, this one would probably be it. I like to research and share. I've been told I've got a pretty good head on my shoulders. But sometimes people don't want to be taught anything; sometimes they just wanna hang and chill (noted). Know what else? Sometimes a perspective, no matter how insightful it might be, is just that. YOUR PERSPECTIVE.

There are a lot of unnecessary fallouts that transpire, both online and off, simply because someone doesn't want to hear other people's opinions unless they correspond with their own. Prideful people are know-it-alls, they tend to cut people off a lot, they don't know how to handle a differing opinion well, and they typically only like those who are a lot like them.

What's really scary about this side of pride is if it's not kept in check, it can turn into full-blown narcissism.

2.You Refuse to Apologize

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I promise you, for the life of me, I can't figure out why it's so hard for some people to apologize; not just when they're wrong but also when it's been brought to their attention that they've hurt someone's feelings. Probably out of all of the ways that my former friend's pride took its toll, it was this one right here.

The best way to describe how this feels is when I read an article about a former Bachelorette's (Kaitlyn Bristowe) response to how an ex of hers was moving following their break-up. She said, "Sometimes you have to take it one 'Are you f—king kidding me?!' at a time." Indeed. There was some stuff my friend was doing that resulted in me using the word "devastated" to them in order to define it. Ask me how many times I got an apology. NOT ONE. NOT ONCE.

By definition, an apology is "a written or spoken expression of one's regret, remorse, or sorrow for having insulted, failed, injured, or wronged another." Anyone who is willing to do this isn't weak; they are very strong. They are even stronger if they offer up the apology without explanations or justifications while trying not to do the same thing that they're apologizing for, moving forward.

If you are cool with knowing that you messed up, wronged someone, or simply hurt their feelings and not apologizing for it, not only are you prideful, you're basically an unsafe individual to be around.

3.You Can Never Be Told About Yourself

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There is not one person on this planet who is perfect. NOT ONE. This means that all of us have something that we could stand to improve upon. Sometimes, we're not self-aware enough to recognize what those things are; this is where our relationships come in.

Healthy relationships aren't just about spending time with individuals we have something in common with or even being around those who make us feel good about ourselves. Healthy relationships should also consist of accountability too.

The friends I have? We call each other out pretty consistently. It's not hard to receive from them because I know it's done in love; I also know they want to see me win.

Be careful about thinking that a true friend isn't someone who will take you to task when needed. A lot of prideful people have never experienced authentic relationships because they'd rather have fans than actual friends.

4.You Don’t Know How to Put Others First

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This is a facet of pride that is a bit more cryptic than the others because you can actually be a really giving person and still be prideful at the same time. How? One way is if you do something for someone else, but you just have to get the credit by blasting it on your IG. Another is you're willing to go the extra mile in a relationship; that is until it cramps your style or it's even remotely inconvenient. Another example is someone needing you to honor a request, but since you don't see how it will even remotely benefit you, you find a way to deny them.

Prideful people are all for helping others out or making them feel comfortable until it becomes a sacrifice or makes them uncomfortable in the process. That friend of mine I've been referencing? We always got along until I needed something that challenged their ego or resulted in them shining less. Then I could basically kick rocks.

If even what you do for others still has something to do with you, that's another way that pride is doing some damage to your relationships (and your character).

5.You Tell People That You’re Humble

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I know a woman who once said to me, "I'm done apologizing for being beautiful." One, I didn't know that beauty was an actual offense and two, that is one of the most prideful things I've ever heard come out of someone's mouth. Ever.

The only thing that sounds even more ridiculous (to me) is when someone brags about how humble they are. I've got an example of this too. One of my girlfriend's husbands is one of the most non-self-aware individuals on the planet. He's also one of the funniest, so a lot of his ridiculousness slides under the guise of humor.

Anyway, one day, as he and I were discussing how he has the knack for totally pissing off his employers, I said, "I think it might be your pride," to which he replied (with a shocked look on his face), "I am one of the most humble people you know."

At first, I thought he was kidding, but once I got his wife to join us in the convo and she was like, "Honey, absolutely not" and he told us we both didn't know what we were talking about (as he got more and more upset too), I walked away knowing two things. One, humble people don't say they are humble (that is the exact contradiction of humility) and two, prideful people are so full of themselves that they tend to think they are every good attribute there is, even if they are told otherwise.

I'm a quotes girl. Lord knows I am. And if there is a quote on pride that sums this piece up perfectly, it would have to be by the author Andrew Murray— "Pride must die in you, or nothing of heaven can live in you."

Healthy relationships are a gift from God. Please don't let your imbalanced sense of pride make people feel like dealing with you is hell on earth. It's not worth it. It really isn't.

Featured image by Getty Images.

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Before she was Amira Unplugged, rapper, singer, and a Becoming a Popstar contestant on MTV, she was Amira Daughtery, a twenty-five year-old Georgian, with aspirations of becoming a lawyer. “I thought my career path was going to lead me to law because that’s the way I thought I would help people,” Amira tells xoNecole. “[But] I always came back to music.”

A music lover since childhood, Amira grew up in an artistic household where passion for music was emphasized. “My dad has always been my huge inspiration for music because he’s a musician himself and is so passionate about the history of music.” Amira’s also dealt with deafness in one ear since she was a toddler, a condition which she says only makes her more “intentional” about the music she makes, to ensure that what she hears inside her head can translate the way she wants it to for audiences.

“The loss of hearing means a person can’t experience music in the conventional way,” she says. “I’ve always responded to bigger, bolder anthemic songs because I can feel them [the vibrations] in my body, and I want to be sure my music does this for deaf/HOH people and everyone.”

A Black woman wearing a black hijab and black and gold dress stands in between two men who are both wearing black pants and colorful jackets and necklaces

Amira Unplugged and other contestants on Becoming a Popstar

Amira Unplugged / MTV

In order to lift people’s spirits at the beginning of the pandemic, Amira began posting videos on TikTok of herself singing and using sign language so her music could reach her deaf fans as well. She was surprised by how quickly she was able to amass a large audience. It was through her videos that she caught the attention of a talent scout for MTV’s new music competition show for rising TikTok singers, Becoming a Popstar. After a three-month process, Amira was one of those picked to be a contestant on the show.

Becoming a Popstar, as Amira describes, is different from other music competition shows we’ve all come to know over the years. “Well, first of all, it’s all original music. There’s not a single cover,” she says. “We have to write these songs in like a day or two and then meet with our producers, meet with our directors. Every week, we are producing a full project for people to vote on and decide if they’d listen to it on the radio.”

To make sure her deaf/HOH audiences can feel her songs, she makes sure to “add more bass, guitar, and violin in unique patterns.” She also incorporates “higher pitch sounds with like chimes, bells, and piccolo,” because, she says, they’re easier to feel. “But it’s less about the kind of instrument and more about how I arrange the pattern of the song. Everything I do is to create an atmosphere, a sensation, to make my music a multi-sensory experience.”

She says that working alongside the judges–pop stars Joe Jonas and Becky G, and choreographer Sean Bankhead – has helped expand her artistry. “Joe was really more about the vocal quality and the timber and Becky was really about the passion of [the song] and being convinced this was something you believed in,” she says. “And what was really great about [our choreographer] Sean is that obviously he’s a choreographer to the stars – Lil Nas X, Normani – but he didn’t only focus on choreo, he focused on stage presence, he focused on the overall message of the song. And I think all those critiques week to week helped us hone in on what we wanted to be saying with our next song.”

As her star rises, it’s been both her Muslim faith and her friends, whom she calls “The Glasses Gang” (“because none of us can see!”), that continue to ground her. “The Muslim and the Muslima community have really gone hard [supporting me] and all these people have come together and I truly appreciate them,” Amira says. “I have just been flooded with DMs and emails and texts from [young muslim kids] people who have just been so inspired,” she says. “People who have said they have never seen anything like this, that I embody a lot of the style that they wanted to see and that the message hit them, which is really the most important thing to me.”

A Black woman wears a long, salmon pink hijab, black outfit and pink boots, smiling down at the camera with her arm outstretched to it.

Amira Unplugged

Amira Unplugged / MTV

Throughout the show’s production, she was able to continue to uphold her faith practices with the help of the crew, such as making sure her food was halal, having time to pray, dressing modestly, and working with female choreographers. “If people can accept this, can learn, and can grow, and bring more people into the fold of this industry, then I’m making a real difference,” she says.

Though she didn’t win the competition, this is only the beginning for Amira. Whether it’s on Becoming a Popstar or her videos online, Amira has made it clear she has no plans on going anywhere but up. “I’m so excited that I’ve gotten this opportunity because this is really, truly what I think I’m meant to do.”

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