1. Doing a good action and being praised on account of it.
Abu Dharr (ra) reports that it was said to Allaah's Messenger (saw): "Have you seen the man who does an action of goodness and the people praise him for that?" He said: "That is the good tiding which the believer receives (in this life)". (Muslim)
2. When the servant becomes lively and eager for worship upon seeing other worshippers.
Ibn Qudamaah al-Maqdisi (ra) said: "A man spends the night with those who regularly perform tahajjud, and who usually pray for most of the night. Although his habit is only to pray for an hour or so, he prays most of the night with them. Or maybe they will fast so he fasts with them. If he had not been with them, this liveliness and zeal would not have arisen. Perhaps someone may think that this is riyaa, however that is not the case absolutely and this matter requires some explanation.
Every believer has an aspiration for the worship of Allaah, ta'ala. However, there are many things which hinder and divert him from that and make him unmindful. It may be the case that being present with others is a cause of stopping this unminduflness and repelling the diversions."
Then he said, "He can then examine himself (when he is alone) by imagining the people to be in a place where he can see them but they cannot see him. If he finds himself performing much worship then that is for the sake of Allaah and if he is not liberal in worshipping Allaah when he is alone, then his extra worship in their presence was riyaa'. (Mukhtasar Minhaj ul-Qaasideen, p.234).
I say that laziness of a man when he is alone is related to his (saw) saying "... Indeed the wolf eats the lonely animal" (1) and is liveliness (in the presence of others) is related to his obedience to the command of the Messenger (saw), "Upon you is the congregational prayer".
3. When a person requests a position which he knows he is fit for, such as the saying of Yusuf (as):
"Give me authority over the treasures of the land. Indeed I am one who guards and one who has knowledge". (12:54)
4. Wearing beautiful and elegant clothes and shoes.
In Saheeh Muslim is the hadeeth of Ibn Mas'ud (ra) who said: "Allaah's Messenger (saw) said, "He who has an atom's weight of pride in his heart will not enter Paradise". A man said, "A man loves that his garment is beautiful and his shoes are beautiful". He said, "Indeed Allaah is beautiful and He loves beauty. Pride is to reject the truth and to look down upon people"."
5. Not Informing Others About One's Sins and Concealing Them.
This is obligatory and has been legislated upon every single Muslim. It is not permissable to proclaim and talk about one's sins due to his (saw) saying:
"All of my ummah will be forgiven except those who make their sins known. A man does an action by night and then awakens in the morning while Allaah had concealed his sin for him and he says: "O so and so! I did such and such yesterday" yet he spent the night while his Lord was covering him and awoke removing the cover of Allaah." (al-Bukhaari, Muslim).
Talking about one's sins produces a lot of corruption and mischief, and this is not the place for a length discussion. Amongst the mischief caused is the encouragement of people towards committing sins and making the commands and orders of Allaah to be treated lightly. Whoever thinks that hiding one's sins is riyaa' and speaking about them is ikhlaas then he is one whom Shaytaan has confounded and we seek refuge in Allaah from him.
6. When a servant gains fame and recognition without having desired it.
al-Maqdisi (ra) said, "A man's seeing fame is blameworthy. As for when it occurs due to Allaah ta'ala, without the man having desired it, then that is not blameworthy although it may be a trial for those who are weak."