The quality of modesty, or humility, comes naturally when we’re attentive. When we see how reactive and unkind we can be, this humbles us considerably. Instead of causing despair, however, this painful realization can connect us with the tenderness of bodhichitta [or, awakened heart]. Modesty, or humbleness, is the opposite of armoring ourselves: it allows us to be receptive and hear what others have to say.
Conscientiousness denotes diligence and honesty. With this virtuous quality we can work calmly for the happiness of others. Instead of working frantically, we pace ourselves and relax.
We can stop struggling with what occurs and see its true face without calling it the enemy. It helps to remember that our spiritual practice is not about accomplishing anything—not about winning or losing—but about ceasing to struggle and relaxing as it is. That is what we are doing when we sit down to meditate. That attitude spreads into the rest of our lives.