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A Little Out of Balance
Developing Fair & Balanced Character Qualities
What in the world is character symmetry?
Let's focus on just the word symmetry. What does symmetry
mean? It means this: "Balanced proportions; also: beauty
of form arising from balanced proportions". So then, character symmetry
would mean having a character that is balanced. It's as simple as that!
Have you ever heard the expression used where it was said a person was, "a
little out of balance"? Being a little out of balance is not a good thing.
An employer would not say, "Hmm, that person is a little bit out of balance,
I think I will hire him." A person in search of mate would not say, "I
have found a person who is a little out of balance. I think I will marry that
person." When we vote, we would not say, "I have found the right
candidate because he seems to be a little out of balance." When it comes
to character, it is important not to be a little out of balance.
Does character matter any more or not?
If you are an actor; if you are an artist; if you
are an entertainer; or if you are a rock & roll musician, there
is a good chance your adoring public does not care if you are a little
out of balance or not.
However, if you are politician; if you are an
employer; if you are a teacher; if you are a leader in the community;
a mother, a father, a sister, a brother, a husband, a wife; or someone's
best friend, there is a good chance we prefer you are not a little
out of balance.
The fundamental question to ask is not whether we
are little out of balance, but rather, "what areas are we a little
out of balance?" If you are making new friends, choosing a life partner,
or in anyway involved in assessing your relationship to some other
person, having the tools handy to help you discover the area they
are a little out of balance are of tremendous value. It is wise and
helpful to know about the character of other people before you make
a commitment to them. Anything short of that can lead to disaster.
Having a balanced character does in fact matter a
In today's world, people who are a little out
of balance will be open targets for character assassination.
What does this mean? It is when one assaults
another's character in order to destroy that person. Whether the accusations
are true or false, this can ruin a person's reputation for life. Many
potential candidates for public office have refused to run because of
their fear of this. Perhaps the very same ones are aware of areas of
their life where they have been a little out of balance. Perhaps they
fear being exposed!
The fear of being exposed can enter
into all of our relationships. At times, we may hunt for a close friend
to trust for years before we find one. We look until we find one that
we believe will not betray us. We look for a friend who will be a loyal
friend. If we reveal to them the areas of our life where we have been
a little out of balance, we do not want them to expose us, judge us, or
What is the
goal of a true intimate friendship? It is to establish trust and
acceptance. It is to establish the mutual up-building of each other's
character. It is to help each other become all that you can become.
It is when there are no fears of being exposed or rejected if we
reveal to them our flaws. We want to know that our true friends will
not expose our weaknesses to harm us, ridicule us, judge us, or embarrass
us. If we confide in them areas where we were a little out of balance,
we desire confidentiality and trust.
Most people have a keen sense for whether they are a
little out of balance or not. Yet few could actually put it into words. Few could
actually tell you specifically in what ways they are a little out of balance.
Moreover, we tend to show people our best face. We do not like other people to
know what our character flaws are. We do not like revealing our flaws to others
unless we are sure they can be trusted.
Have you ever had an encounter with some person only
to find out they could not be trusted at all? Perhaps it was a small issue.
Perhaps it was a very large issue. Perhaps you confided in them about yourself
or your own problems, and they betrayed that trust you placed in them.
you needed some compassion, and you confided in them with a certain level
of trust. Then you were shocked when they gave you no compassion at all
...but only scorn and ridicule. Perhaps you trusted in them for help,
leadership, and guidance. Then they stabbed you in the back through
deceit and betrayal of trust. Perhaps you trusted in their loyal
friendship to you. Perhaps it was a close friend or family member.
Then you found out they had no loyalty for you at all. Then they
denied doing anything at all.
Every conflict is due to both sides being a little out of
There are no exceptions!
If you can think of an exception, it is something other
than conflict. If you have found yourself in a conflict, if you have concluded
that it must be the other person's fault entirely, guess again! It does not take
much for us to start or add to a conflict. You did at least one thing to contribute
to the conflict.
When two are involved, and they both are only a little
out of balance, conflict can easily happen. It is always so easy to see what
it is that the other person did wrong. It seems much harder for us to admit
that we did something to contribute to the conflict.
The question is not if you
are little out of balance and partly responsible for the conflict. The
question is which area are you a little out of balance? Was it your creativity?
Was it your fair-mindedness? Was it your forgiveness or discretion? Perhaps
it was your discernment, your discipline, or your objectivity!
Suppose that you have an encounter with someone. Suppose that the other
person is being a little out of balance in their character. Suppose
that what they are saying or doing is causing you harm, injury, or insult.
Has that ever happened to you? Well, your next choice will be the deciding
factor of whether or not you are in a conflict. Your next choice will
decide if you are preventing a conflict or engaging
in one. The choice is up to you.
Presently, the human race is made up of those who range from being a
a lot out of balance. Wouldn't it be nice if everyone had
a tag on their wrist that we could read when we meet them? You understand,
on their tag would be the resume' of their character. It would tell of
what areas that they were a little out of balance. It would tell whether
they were a lot out of balance.
So then, the rule of etiquette would
be that each time you meet someone new you could read their tag first.
Once you saw their tag, you could then decide whether they were worth
getting to know or not worth the risk. The tags could even be color-coded
by the people who knew them before you did. That way, warnings about them
could be passed on to those who are next in line to meet them. If they were
mean or rude to you, you could simply give them a red tag to wear as a warning
to the next person. Have you ever met someone you wish would have come with
a warning tag?
Okay, here is the good news!
You see; each one already has color-coded tags on them.
The issue is not if they come with tags or not. The real issue is how do we learn
how to read those tags? You see, the tags are written in the language of character.
In order to read the tags, you first have to learn how to read the language of
character. Solving Conflicts is about learning
how to read the language of character.
Now then, some people are very cleaver about keeping their tags hidden. Those
types should have a "buyers beware" sticker on their forehead! Those people
can be very hard to read even if you know the language of character.
most people do not know how to keep their tags hidden. That is a good thing.
Most people wear their tags on their wrist for everyone to read. In a very
brief encounter, you might not have the time to read their tags before they
try to start a conflict with you. That is why it is always a good idea to
take some time to learn about people first. Take some time to read their
tags first. You will avoid many troubles for yourself if you do. Choose your
friends wisely! Get to know them first before you make unwise commitments
You have some tags of your own. Before you
go around reading other people's tags, you need to learn how to read your own
tags first. Knowing your own character is the first step to becoming balanced.
Then you can become the person that others would like to meet for the very
first time. One good choice at a time you can begin to be more balanced in
your character. Then you can become the person with a balanced character who
would make a great best friend.
Conflicts is devoted to helping you learn how to read your own character
tags. It is devoted to help you see areas that are a
little or a
lot out of balance. It is devoted to helping you see new ways that you
can get your character in balance. The goal is to help you develop a balanced
character one good choice at a time.
goal is to help you read the character tags of others. The purpose of this
is not so that you can be the judge of others. The purpose of this is to
enable you to find helpful ways to assist other willing people in their character
*Character Diagnosis Tool*
In fact, as you proceed through Solving
Conflicts Part Two, you will be able to see all of your own color-coded
tags. You will be able to actually see your character
strengths in the automated, interactive, color-coded chart.
You will see
your character strengths color-coded and ranked from the safest to the
most at risk areas of your character. The most at risk areas of your character
are the areas that are most likely to be the trouble spots in your own
character that are causing conflict in your life. Identifying them is the first-step
to preventing them ...one good choice at a time!
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