Power is so peculiar that President Coolidge’s most

Power and
humility are polar opposites. It is like oil and water or fire and ice. They
simply cannot exist in harmony, but, somehow, President Calvin Coolidge
possessed both things at the same time. As one reads the “Autobiography of
Calvin Coolidge”, it is impossible to overlook the humility that covers the
book from beginning to end. His humility is visible in his career and his heart
of service. The concept of a humble leader is so foreign, yet President
Coolidge’s life makes perfect sense of the current paradox.

 

While it is
indeed a misconception that the President makes all government-related
decisions on his own, he does have the final word in many cases. However, that
does not mean he cannot seek guidance from someone else. Although President
Coolidge claimed this Presidential duty as his own by saying, “No one can share
with him the responsibility. No one can make his decisions for him.”, he often
sought the advice of others. Throughout his autobiography, President Coolidge
can be seen tuning his ear to the advice of other people since his childhood
all the way to the end of his presidency. He heeded the advice of his father to
pursue in law in his younger years. He stated that, during his time in the
White House, he “rarely failed to accept” the recommendations given to him by
the Cabinet. Regardless of the power that he had and the position that he was
in, he was open not only open to advice but also to correction and criticism.

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He stayed humble and never viewed his own judgment to be higher than that of
other people.

 

Many people have
a desire to be heard. The presidency is the loudest microphone one could ask
for. That is why it is so peculiar that President Coolidge’s most famous
nicknames were “Cautious Cal” and “Silent Cal.” Why would someone who has the
ability to change the world through words be known for his silent and terse
demeanor? I personally believe that his silence was not because he neglected
his audience, but because he respected them with a humble heart. When
describing his preparation for his numerous speeches, President Coolidge said,
“Each word has to be weighed in the realization that it is a Presidential
utterance which will be dissected at home and abroad to discover its outward
meaning and any possible hidden implications.” He knew that his words had
power. He knew that it would affect a countless number of people and nations.

He knew that millions of people listened to his every word, his every pause in
a speech and that their lives depended on what he said. But President Coolidge
did not abuse that power by speaking indiscriminately; his words of authority
were laced with humility and care. He used his words only when necessary and
picked and chose his words carefully, aware of the fact that his words would be
dissected to the very last period. It was because of his prudence and humility
that he was cautious and kept his words to himself, despite knowing thing power
that he held.

 

Humility is a
quality that every person should have but is rare to find in our society. It is
even harder to find it in the tier of our current powerful, rich and
influential leaders. President Coolidge is the epitome of a humble leader. He
led with the purpose to serve and to put himself in the shoes of his people.

His humility is displayed all throughout his career. In spite of being known as
a man of few words, President Coolidge was extremely popular. He was honored
and respected. I believe every word of Proverbs 11:2 – “Pride leads to
disgrace, but with humility comes honor.” President Coolidge’s life portrayed
that proverb perfectly. For one to be honored and for one to truly be at the
top, they must be humble. They must be willing to step down, no matter their
position of authority, and have a heart of service, just as President Coolidge
did.

 

    No matter how much you accomplish
throughout your life, you cannot be complete without humility. Humility leaves
room for opportunities to improve yourself, to make a better you. Humility
leaves room for other people to be in your life. This underrated yet crucial
value is something all people should strive to obtain. Surely a President could
credit himself for his journey to the top and yet President Coolidge came to
the conclusion that, “As he the President contemplates the workings of his
office, he comes to realize with an increasing sense of humility that he is but
an instrument in the hands of God.”