I think genuine modesty has more practical value than people realise. Say you recieve praise for something you have a knack for. Most of us have heard it before–“hey you’re pretty good at that!”, “hey, where’d you learn to do that so well?”.
Obviously, the more praise recieved, the bigger tendency there is for people’s egos to inflate. However, I started thinking about what exactly makes egos inflate and what impact this has on real progression.In order for your ego to expand, you have to first acknowledge and agree with the praise you’re recieving. “Yes–as a matter of fact, I am pretty damn good, aren’t I?”.
These kind of thoughts alone are dangerous. While you bask in compliments, you’re filled with thoughts of superiority. There won’t be any attempts to develop skills when you’re in complete agreeance with all the compliments you get.In my eyes, it’s ignorant to fully accept compliments with “damn, I’m good” thoughts. Of course, recieve them graciously (“thank you”)–but know that people usually compliment based on very limited knowledge. If they TRULY understood the scope of superior talent out there in the world–trust me, they might not consider you so special. After all, there’s a reason why it’s more rewarding to recieve a compliment from an expert (related to the matter) rather than from random onlookers.

A humble perspective might take compliments in this way: “My talents are poor compared to (insert expert here). How can I develop my skills so I might actually deserve this praise?”. Someone who is humble will acknowledge the actual degree of skill out in the world–then maybe be inspired enough to pursue that.

Wasted Talent. The way I see it, natural talent is a healthy foundation to refine talent, but that’s all. If two people were to pursue the same things: a hard-working gifted person versus a hard-working average person–obviously, the talented individual would excel further, and faster. On the flipside, a well practised person who doesn’t have “raw, natural” talent can exceed the talent of a lazy person who does have “natural” talent.

I’m sure you’ve seen “washed up” folks, and I constantly see them too. You know, those “high school all stars” who were praised for whatever their natural talents were and are still fixated on that past. Although these are only theories, I think these people were praised for their natural gifts in the past, but never bothered to develop them because they were too busy beaming with pride. It makes me truly sad to see natural talent go in the dumpster due to conceit and laziness.

Can you imagine what the world might be like if people just recognized their potential, kept humble, and progressed?
Wow.