Not About Me

Lyrics

 (Chorus) 
It’s not about me. It's not about me. 
It's not about me. It's not about me. 
It's not about me. It's not about me. 
It's not about me. It's not about me. 

I don't need to be right all the time. 
I don't need to be right right now. 
I don't need to be right all the time. 
I don't need to be right right now. 

It's not about me...

I don't need to burn bright all the time. 
I don't need to burn bright right now. 
I don't need to burn bright all the time. 
I don't need to burn bright right now. 

It's not about me...

I don't need to be first all the time. 
I don't need to be first right now. 
I don't need to be first all the time. 
I don't need to be first right now. 

It's not about me...

I don't need the last word all the time. 
I don't need the last word right now. 
I don't need the last word all the time. 
I don't need the last word right now. 

It's not about me...

I don't need to be right all the time.  
I don't need to be right right now.  
I don't need to be right all the time.  
I don't need to be right right now. 

Nah nah,  nah nah,  nah nah
Nah,  nah nah,  nah nah nah nah  now.

Middot 

Humility  ענוה  Anavah  
Enoughness  הסתפקות  Histapkut
Respect  כבוד  Kavod 
Truth  אמת  Emet
Self-Restraint  גבורה  Gevurah 
Patience  סבלנות  Savlanut
Silence  שתיקה  Shtikah

Reflections on this Song

Alan Morinis explains that Anavah / humility is taking up exactly the right amount of space—no more, no less. “Space” can be physical space, air-time, decibels, or attention from other people. It’s easy to forget our role, or misinterpret the context. A hungry ego can cause this confusion, and other people can trigger it. 

A balanced interaction involves working together toward a common goal. When an interaction is more about me than about us, that imbalance could reflect ego overflowing its proper space. 

Learning from Others 

How do I feel when someone else always needs to be right? 

How do I feel when someone monopolizes a conversation? attention? or a sofa? 

How do I feel when someone always needs to come across as superior? When another driver races ahead to be first in line at a traffic light?

How do I feel when someone always needs the last word? 

If I don’t like it when other people do those things, then I certainly don’t want to be like that myself. 

Learning from Introspection 

Do I need others to recognize that I’m right? Why? Am I so sure I know the truth? Do I sometimes find it hard to disengage from a pointless argument? 

Do I need to outshine others or grab the spotlight? Why? Does it hurt to feel as though nobody is listening to me? Does my ego get in the way of being present for others and listening to them? What could I learn by watching and listening better? Who am I shutting out? How can I share the stage more equitably? 

Do I need to be first in line? First at the traffic light? First in every competition? First to speak? Why? What is the cost of being first? 

Do I need the last word? Why? Does it make me right? Powerful? The winner? 

When I recognize these “needs” in myself, one antidote is to notice how I’m taking up space, and dial-down the volume on my own ego.

On the other hand, do I withdraw too much, and could I consider contributing a bit more energy to the room? True Anavah is finding the right balance. 

Learning from Nature 

The peacock illustrates the need for balance and the downside of grabbing the spotlight. Its beautiful colors attract attention—the peahen’s and ours. Yet the tail feathers, long and bulky, occupy far more space than the bird’s body, and hinder flight. 

When I have an important contribution to make, it’s my responsibility to make it, and sometimes even to promote it. Yet I must also “shorten my feathers” to make space for others to contribute, and even encourage them to enter that space. Anavah , humility, requires both—taking space and leaving room—each in its correct measure. Overdo either one and it doesn’t fly so well.

Photo by Siddhant Kumar on Unsplash