Thursday, October 13, 2011

Insecure Fortress

Arrogance is the best defense insecurity has.

I was working at an insurance agency early in my professional career, well; it was more of a brokerage firm.  We took referrals from companies that could not write risks and found coverage through different companies by working with underwriting and such.  I was working on quoting coverage for one home in particular that still baffles me.  It was about the most secure building probably ever built, but because of how it was built and what it was we could not place it with a company.  It was a mobile home in Florida, which typically is automatically difficult to write, but the owner of the home must have known this in advance.  The homeowner built a double concrete block wall around the entire home and then had it connected with heavy duty brackets to the mobile home, thus making it a fortress.  At its core the home was a very unstable mobile home, but the homeowner had built up these ridiculous walls around it that no one or nothing would be able to get through.  I am still enamored by this scenario, but most recently it was brought to mind as a physical representation of a principle I’ve been working through and noticing.  People, me being the best example, are much like this home. 

Many people have been hurt by my own arrogance, including myself.  Many are shocked to learn or hear me say that I am really insecure and thus build up this rough exterior to seem like I cannot get hurt, when truth be told, I am hurt easily.  I wonder if this isn’t the same for many people that we experience throughout our days and lives.  Could viewing harsh or hardened people in this way change how we interact as well?  If we see angry, arrogant, harsh people as hurt people maybe we would handle them differently and maybe they would impact us in a different way as well.  Next time the rude cashier snaps at you maybe you will see she is in pain.  Next time the boss is rude to you and demeaning maybe you’ll see him in angst.  Maybe all the jerks will become people in pain; maybe the hard will be seen as soft.  This change in perspective could not only benefit the persons we interact with, but mostly it will impact how we are affected by them, granting freedom from bitterness. 

The fortress you see may only be a weak structure covered in harsh defense mechanisms.  I find this to be a challenging attitude to take when walking through my own environment and hope it may be to you as well.  Be well, live well, love well.


  1. Arrogance is a concept that haunts my life. It does so much damage, and yet I have succeeded by learning to embrace what others have labeled as "arrogance" in myself.

    Maybe we need more understanding to tell the difference between confidence and arrogance. Throwing one out there -> Arrogance is an unwillingness to change. Confidence leads one fearlessly into change.

  2. Agreed my friend, there is a huge difference and I really like what you said about confidence too. Cheerio!