To be simple is the best thing in the worldGilbert K. Chesterton
The best index to a person’s character is how he treats people who can’t do him any good, and how he treats people who can’t fight backAbigail Van Buren
And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching. Teach the truth so that your teaching can’t be criticized. Then those who oppose us will be ashamed and have nothing bad to say about us
All that has been uncovered so far
In the previous study on what character entails, we uncovered the depth of an individual’s make-up based on the original intent of what character was designed to be.
Our analysis initially took us back to the conflict between the flesh (sinful nature) and the Spirit. This stance was taken from attempting to understand how to walk in the fruits of the Spirit. The process that led us up to this point where we now look at the entirety of a person’s uniqueness can be learned from this article.
From the complete denial of self (which is all efforts to do and be good in one’s own strength) to physical discipline and refusal to associate with anything that can prevent character growth, desiring to and being led by the Spirit essentially has its foundation in being in Christ.
Breaking Down Character Piece by Piece
One of the main aspects of everything that involves character has to do with situations or experiences, whether they are good or bad. Something that can be said to impact a person’s character is their background, beliefs, culture and circumstances, especially during the early stages of their life, however, in spite of how a person shapes themselves, studies have shown that character can be grouped into one or more of the following:
Wisdom – Creativity and Open-Mindedness
Courage – Bravery and Honesty
Humanity – Kindness and Social Intelligence
Justice – Fairness and Teamwork
Temperance – Forgiveness and Modesty
Transcendence – Appreciation of Beauty and Gratitude
Everyone already has most of these traits if not all of them. There are some that are dominant and others that surface in different situations. Part of building good character traits is intentionality. If you have a tough time staying humble, or perhaps you have a short fuse, practising the attributes you want to embody is the main goal. Learn how you can infuse them into your environment, and how you can add them to your personality.
It takes recognizing the limitations a person may have in order to figure out exactly what needs to be focused on. Here is a list of all the character qualities that surface in one way or another in every human at varying stages of their lives:
- Strong (mentally!)
- Thrifty (not wasteful!)
- Assertive (takes the initiative in a good way!)
- Great listener
- Curiosity (eager to learn!)
Having Laser Focus
The above shows elements of what everyone is made up of. There are arguments that indicate that these attributes do not necessarily diminish or are to be perceived as weaknesses, but rather fewer dominant strengths.
A person may need to be bold when standing up for someone or something they believe in, but not automatically portray such behaviour in all situations. It may be wise to be respectful and polite in all cases someone finds themselves in but will need to exercise social intelligence in order to preserve their integrity, protect those around them and mitigate any upheavals.
In the same way, negative traits require circumstances that mould them into finer personalities in addition to discipline and resolve. Similarly to changing habits, developing character naturally requires one of the most important qualities: patience.
Diving Deeper Into The Matter
In the pursuit of growth and a positive lifestyle some questions need to be considered:
a) Could it be that the person does not know anything about character and will be in a better position to build it once they are made aware?
b) What can be perceived about a person at certain stages in their life and the impact their age has in the process?
c) Should there be expectations for the nurturing of various character traits based on the social construct one finds themselves in? Would a leader/apprentice relationship be more suited to cultivating specific character qualities?
d) What period in length can be agreed upon concerning the full maturity of character? A single class session? A few weeks? A year?
e) In what way does a person with good character have an effect on others in social settings?
Summing It All Up
In the grand scheme of things, the conditions and surroundings an individual finds themselves in, along with the lessons they learn in all aspects of their lives, heavily impact their character and their personality. it all comes down to determination. When faced with difficult cases that more than anything else serve to challenge a person’s values and convictions, will they remain true to the character that has formed who they are, and remain resolute with integrity?