Thoughts on the topic of Character
Character is not defined by what we do when things are going our way. It is not defined when things are easy.
Character is defined by how we act when we are tired or stressed. It is defined by what we do when we’re faced with things we do not want to do. It is defined by how we treat those who have hurt us, and those who are different from us. It is defined by how we make difficult decisions, by what we do when no one is looking.
Character develops in the face of adversity. It does not grow by surrounding ourselves with people just like us, or people who do not challenge us to become better people. It does not grow by avoiding difficulties at all cost. It does not grow by only associating with those who always agree with how you think and feel. It does not grow if your efforts are focused on changing your environment, and those in it, to make life easier for you.
The opposite is true. It grows by surrounding ourselves with a variety of people different from ourselves, by being around people who can gently expose our flaws so that we can learn and grow. It grows by accepting that our lives are shaped by how we think and act, and challenging ourselves to do better. It never exists within us if we feel that we are superior to others, that we are owed for what we contribute. It will never exist in a person who believe that their integrity is conditionally given to others. Character is never a contingent entity. It is because you are.
“Adversity is the sunshine which helps character grow.” (Jenn Hearn)