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Wet Sand Bricks & Blindfolds
What Are Character Qualities?
And How Do You Develop a Good Character?
Every time we think a thought;
every time we speak a word; every time we perform an action; every
time we interact with another person, we are forming our own character.
Building our character is like building a home.
Every choice that we make determines what kind of brick we are going
to use next in the building up of our character. The power of choice
is the most powerful thing on all the earth. No force of any kind known
to humanity can force people to choose contrary to their own will.
As we build our own character, the choices we made in the past begin
to influence what we are likely to choose next.
Imagine that you are building a home out of bricks. In addition, each brick
that you lay for the foundation of your house represents either a genuine or
a counterfeit character trait. You can choose to lay either type of brick that
Imagine that the genuine character traits where
made out of solid granite. Now imagine that the counterfeit traits
where made out of wet sand bricks. As you build the foundation of your
house, if you use too many of the wet sand bricks and not enough of
the granite bricks, your house would be in danger of collapsing. It
is just like that with the building of your own character.
the choice whether we use genuine character traits or counterfeit character
traits. The more genuine character traits that we build our character with,
the more solid will be the foundation of our lives.
At times, it almost seems that we are on autopilot, but we are not. However,
old habits can be hard to break. If you have been reaching for a cup of coffee
every day for the last 30 years, it is a safe bet that tomorrow will be no
different. Yet, reaching for that cup of coffee is still a choice. No matter
what, you can choose it or not choose it tomorrow morning.
At times, it almost
seems that we are like computer robots, but we do not have to be that way.
We have a free will. We have the power of choice. A 30-year habit of grabbing
for a cup of coffee might seem impossible to change tomorrow. Yet the pattern
of our choice can change as easily as we can say the words, "no thank-you!"
Sometimes we play a game with our own self. We get up in the morning,
and we pretend that we do not really have any choices to make. We pretend
that the entire day is pre-set for us. Then we pretend that we are too
weak to do anything about it. We pretend that we cannot change our habits
or our routine. We pretend that we cannot change the way that we react
when people irritate us or annoy us. We pretend that we cannot be nice
in response to rude people. We pretend that we must continue the way
that we do, indulging when we choose, abstaining if we like. It seems
as though we love to pretend how weak we are. Sometimes we go so far
to pretend that we are not pretending. Nevertheless, we are not robots.
We can make new choices next time.
On the other hand, when it comes to matters that make us want to rise
up and be the boss, we pretend how powerful we are. We pretend that we
can do what we want; that we can say what we want; and that we can get
away with most anything we want to get away with because we are the boss!
Being the boss of any given situation can really test our character.
It can truly reveal who we really are and what our traits are.
How we act around other people vs. how we act when no one is looking
is a good way to judge our own character. Yet, few of us ever look closely
at our own self to determine what our own character traits are. In fact,
most people probably could not even tell you what type of character traits
Much less, we tend to have no clue as to what the
character traits are of those who are closest to us. A person's character
traits will show how they may or may not act in any given situation.
Would you ever drive a car blindfolded?
Would you ever go climbing up a mountain blindfolded?
Would you ever drive a boat blindfolded?
Would you ever ride a bike blindfolded?
Of course, you would not! Disaster would be the
results. Yet, many have started out in their adult life with blind-folders
on their eyes. Why is that? It happens when people lack the basic ABCs
of character traits.
As a result, too many have been blind-sided in
their relationships. Conflict is the result. They find it upsetting
when their friend or partner is too bossy, or too talkative, or not
good with money, or disorganized, etc. They find it shocking and
surprising as though they had no forewarning signs to read at all.
In reality, the signs were written clearly for them to read. They
could have read those signs in advance to see the warnings. Why
did they not read them? The answer is simple. They were written
in a language that was unknown to them. That language is the language
of character. Have you learned that language yet?
The lack of knowing the language of character is the cause of many conflicts.
By learning this language, you can identify the genuine traits, the counterfeit
traits, and the traits that are most likely to cause problems. By learning
this language, you can reduce the amount of bad surprises that you will find
with yourself and the people in your life.
Too many have seen those problems creeping into their relationships. So
many conflicts occur that we have coined a cute little expression to tell
each other about it. We call those conflicts irreconcilable differences.
- Imagine if you could know what character strengths
cause the most conflict in your life.
- Imagine if you could know which counterfeits you were using when you lost your temper or act poorly.
- Imagine if you could help others to see which
character strengths they are using or misusing.
- Imagine if you could find which character qualities are part of your Blue Zone or Safe Zone qualities, which never cause harm, insult, or injury to yourself or others. Solving Conflicts Diagnosis Tool in Part Two will help you find the ones in your most Safe Zone.
- Imagine having a better plan than trying to
When you try to change people, it always leads them
to feel like they are not being accepted for whom they are. That one
thing causes many conflicts. Learning how to speak with others in the
language of character is the answer.
Solving Conflicts is a system to learn about
yourself and others.
Part Two will teach you to understand
better the genuine traits. It will also teach you how the counterfeit
traits cause conflict. You will get sage advice on how to improve
your genuine traits and how to stop using counterfeit traits in order
to avoid and solve conflict. With a little bit of regular practice,
you will learn how to use the language of character.
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