Lesson Transcript

Hi everybody. My name is Alisha. In this lesson, I'm going to talk about, "How to Express Humility," in English. Let's get started. Okay.
First, I want to define what is humility. Humility. Humility is a noun. Humility is a state of not thinking you are better than other people. So, humility isโ€”it's considered a good state. So, we don't think like, "I'm better than that person," or "That person is below me," or something like that. Humility is considered a positive state to be in. So, there are a couple of different situations where it's common to express humility. First, I'm going to talk about some expressions you can use if you receive a special award of some kind, or if you received kind of like an honorable recognition. These two are some cases at work or maybe in your studies where it's important to express humility.
So, first let's take a look at these expressions. We would use these when we receive awards. So, the first expression is, "I am honored to accept this award." Keyword here is, "honored." So, "honor" is the root. That means it's respectable. So, it's something that's really special and I feel appreciative. I want to say, "thank you," and show that I respect this situation. "I am honored to accept." So, "to accept," means, "It's okay. I will take it. I am honored to accept this award." This is how maybe lots of awards speeches begin. If you have watched English-speaking awards shows, you might hear something similar to this and this. Similarly, "It's a great honor to receive this award." These two, they really mean the same thing. Just slightly different ways of saying it.
Here, we're using "honor" as a noun. "It's a great honor," or "I am honored." They really mean the same thing. Here, I'm using the verb, "to receive," instead of "to accept." In this case, they do mean the same thing. They mean like, "to take." Except, in some cases, can have the idea or have the feeling of something being like, okay, where "receive," just means, "I'm going to take this." Like paperwork. "I've received your paperwork. I'm putting it over here." Whereas, "to accept" something, means like "to confirm" something. For example, you accept a student to a university. So, receiving is just like taking them, but accepting a student to a university is just like, "Okay, great. You're part of the university now." "To accept an award," is similar. Like we had to approve the acceptance of the award. So, there's a very, very small difference there. In general, in this case, these two really mean the same thing. They're just different ways to say a similar expression.
Let's take a look though at the third one here. "I greatly appreciate your consideration." "I greatly appreciate your consideration." This would be okay to use if you receive an award. Maybe this could be sentence two. Like, "I am honored to accept this award. I greatly appreciate your consideration." Here, "your," you could change this if you like. "Your," means the group of people who decided to give you the award, or the group of people who gave you like special recognition, or gave you an honor. "I greatly appreciate your consideration." If this is like a board of directors at a company, you could replace "your" with "the board's consideration." "I greatly appreciate the board's consideration." This is good, very general expression. It doesn't have to be for an award, just for special recognition is okay. Like you get a special bonus, for example. "Wow! I greatly appreciate your consideration."
Alright. So let's continue to two more samples. These are for more like an honorable recognition or like you have received an honorable invitation to something. Like to join a very respected project, or project, like an organization, or you're going to participate in something, an exciting project that is very respected.
So, first sentence is, "I am grateful to have been able to participate in this project." This is actually a sentence we would use if the speaker, in this case, me. If I have finished my role in the project, "I am grateful to have been able," this means I had the life experience of participating in this project." I had this experience. "I was able to," that sounds, again, it's like you're lowering yourself. You're making yourself sound a little bit lower. That's that humility point here. "I am grateful to have been able to participate," this sounds much more polite. This expresses humility much more than, "I'm happy I could join." "I'm happy I could join," doesn't express the same level of appreciation. So, "grateful," shows your respect for this situation. And this, "I'm grateful to have been able to," so that means it sounds like maybe in another situation, this would not have been possible. So, "I am grateful to have been able participate in this project," really shows your respect for that project.
Similarly, here. "I am thrilled to have the opportunity to participate." So, "thrilled." "Thrilled," this means like excited. Very excited, but it sounds a little more formal in this case. So it's a stronger word that means, "excited." "I am thrilled to have the opportunity to participate." This is probably for an upcoming project. Here I used, "to have been able to," suggesting that the project has concluded, it's finished. Here, "I am thrilled to have the opportunity to participate." A sentence like this is something used when we're going to start something new. Again, here I'm using some words that show my respect for the situation. "I am thrilled to have the opportunity," so, "opportunity," means "chance." But "opportunity" sounds more formal than "chance." "I am thrilled," that there's this great chance and I want to express it more formally to show that I respect the situation. So these are two good ones you can use for an honorable project that you can join or you received like a recognition for participating in a project. Again, this is for something that's probably finished or is going to finish very soon, and this is probably for something that's coming up in the future.
Okay, before I get to this point, I want to go to the second group. The second group of expressions here is, "Expressing gratitude." That means ways to say, "thank you." "Expressing gratitude for your teammates, for your community, for your family," and so on. For the people around you. So, a key to expressing humility is you that don't focus on yourself only. It's not just, "Me. Me. Me. I did all these stuff on my own." But who are the people I worked with. So, how do I express my appreciation for those people, on my team, or in my community? So, some expressions you can use--this one is very general, "Thank you so much for your support." So, a company can use this with their customers, like in an email to their customers who have helped them in some way. We could use this on YouTube, for example. If I want to say to the viewers, who liked the video, who leave comments, I can say, "Thank you so much for your support." So, this is a polite expression that shows your appreciation for a group of people or for just one person even, and it also sounds a little bit friendly. "Thank you so much for your support." You can remove this, this "so much," and make the sentence, "Thank you for your support." I like to say, "Thank you so much for your support." So, I think it shows a little bit more strongly, the appreciation.
Another one we can use is this, "I or we couldn't do it without you." "I couldn't do it without you." "We couldn't do it without you." A variation on this is, "I couldn't have done it without you." "I couldn't have done it without you," is what it sounds like at native speed. "I couldn't have done it without you." So, "couldn't have done it without you," means again, something like this, "grateful to have been," we used that. "Couldn't have done it without you," means that something happened in the past and without that person, or without that group, the project or the action would not have been possible. So, we say in the present, "I could not." Past, "I could not have done it without you." So, we're using perfect tense to describe that relationship there. So, here I'm not using that. I'm just using simple, "We couldn't do it without you." "I couldn't do it without you."
For example, like our channel. So, we couldn't do it without you. Where, "you," is our viewers. So, in this case, "it," in this sentence refers to the activities of the speaker. So, in our case, "We couldn't do it without you," means we could not make the channel without our viewers. The viewers are important for us, so that we can get your feedback, and so that we can make informative videos that help people. So, in this case, that's our "it." "You," means the people around the person speaking. So, "it," just refers to the activities there.
Other companies might say like, "We couldn't do it without you." Like we couldn't make our products without our customers. That's a very common one. Or maybe an athlete could say, "I couldn't do it without the fans." Maybe an entertainer or an athlete would say something like that. So, it's to express their appreciation and to say like, "My job would not be possible without you." That's what this really means. That's the breakdown of the sentence.
Okay. Let's move on to the next expression which is, "Thank you to everyone on our team." This is very general. Some other variations are like, "Thank you to our wonderful team members;" "Thank you to our amazing team;" and so on. This can be used for your work. You can use this in sports. You can use this at school, if you're working in a group project. You could change "team" to "group." "Thank you to everyone in our group," though. We change the preposition, "on our team," or "in our group." We do not use "on a group." We use "in a group." This is really great for talking about your colleagues and your co-workers. So, for example, if I want to use this expression to talk about our team here, I could say, "Thank you to everyone on our team for their hard work." Something like that is a good way to express appreciation for your teammates. Okay.
Onward to the next set of expression. This one, I made this one about family. This I thought was a nice follow up to the award-related expressions we talked about earlier. So, you receive an award. For example, "I am honored to accept this reward. I greatly appreciate your consideration. Thank you to everyone on our team for their hard work. I would also like to thank my family for their support." So, this is something that you might hear at an awards speech. I have here, "I would like." This is one situation where it's natural not to reduce to, "I'd." "I'd like to thank." "I would like to thank my family." This sounds more formal. And in this situation, accepting an award, it sounds more natural to be more formal. So, it's okay here. "I would like to thank my family for their support." Of course you can change this. "I would like to thank my wife," "I would like to thank my husband," "I would like to thank my partner for his or her or their support." You can change this as well, too. But, generally, "support," is a nice word to use, that's kind of open. Okay.
Onward. This one is good for like a community-related event. Like a volunteer event or something that is organized in your town or city. "Thank you to all the community members who volunteered their time and effort." "Their time and effort," this is I think a good expression to include here. You could say, "Thank you to all the community members who volunteered." That's great, but showing that you recognize the other people who gave you their time and their effort. So, "effort," means like their energy. They took action to do something. They participated and they gave time and effort for something that you put together is a really important thing to notice, I think. It's an important thing to recognize. This is a good one for a community event. Of course, you could use just, "people." "Thank you to all the people who volunteered their time and effort," too. But if this is like a city or a town event, it might be good to consider your local community by using a word such as this. Okay.
I want to finish this lesson with just a couple very small points. We commonly use a few expressions when responding to compliments. So, a reminder. Compliment is when someone gives you a nice feedback, gives you a nice comment about something, and you want to express humility. Like, "Oh, it's not so great," or "No-no-no-no," that feeling. These are a few very common ways we do that.
Let's imagine we get a compliment. Someone says, "I like your shirt." We can respond by saying, "You're too kind." "You're too kind." You could also say, "Ah, it's nothing." We often say like, "Ah, it's nothing. This is old," or "This was so cheap." So, we kind of put ourselves down sometimes in this way. Sometimes. It depends a little bit on the person. You could say, "Oh! That's so nice of you to say." "That's so nice of you to say." Or you could just say, "Aww. Thanks;" as well, too. "Aww." So, A-W-W here means, "Aww." "Aww. Thanks." So, it depends on the person if you compliment someone and they say like, "Aww. It's nothing." It's a fairly natural response. Some people, when you compliment, will just say, "Thank you. I bought it at such and such store." That's also very natural, but if you would like to express humility, you can use one of these expressions. I tend to say--I tend to use something like this. Not "It's nothing," but I will use a specific adjective in the moment. Like if someone compliments my shirt, I'll say, "Oh this? This is so old! It was so cheap." I usually choose a specific adjective related to the compliment. Or if someone will say, "I like your new haircut!" I would say, "Oh, me too, but I can't style it perfectly." Like I tend to choose a specific point that I can kind of make myself stand a little bit lower in that moment. So, that's kind of up to you. You can kind of listen to the compliment and choose how you want to respond. If you're not sure, you don't know how to use this, you could just say, "Thank you. I appreciate it." So, these are just a couple ways that we respond to compliments. Everyday small points in daily life.
So, I hope that this lesson was helpful. I hope you learned some good ways to express humility, and I hope that you have many reasons to use these expressions. That's very positive, I think. So, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to let us know in the comments section of this video. Also, you can feel free to practice making a speech here if you want, like an award acceptance speech, that might be interesting. Thanks very much for watching this lesson and I will see you again soon. Bye-bye.

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