Wondering how to build strong character? Maybe you’ve looked in the mirror and thought to yourself, “Responsibility isn’t my forte, but it probably would help at work if I got better at exercising it. As for commitment – well, my girlfriend’s always telling me I’m afraid of that quality. I wish I knew how to build strong character.” Wishing won’t help, of course, so let’s take a few minutes to look together at how to build strong character.
“How to Build Strong Character” should be made the title of a movie if we really wanted to get everyone involved. Maybe more people would begin to learn the secret. Viewers could enjoy laughing at the mishaps of protagonists and antagonists while they themselves learned how to build strong character.
Such a movie could make an enormous difference in society, but we might wait a long time for it to hit the box office, and you want to know how to build strong character right now. Let’s look at several ideas.
Benefits for Adults
Discover how to build strong character as an adult, and you’ll be amazed at the way it revolutionizes life! Whereas you were a “slowpoke” before, you’ll become punctual, on time for everything. While you were quick to fly off the handle before, you’ll exercise self-control, keeping anger in check. Your spouse will appreciate your strengthened commitment to marriage.
Not only should you learn how to build strong character in your personal life – you should apply the same effort and knowledge to business settings.
Employers may not recognize the reason for transformations you’ll accomplish, but they’ll appreciate them. They value punctual, diligent employees who exercise responsibility. They look with favor on commitment, determination, thoroughness, and resourcefulness. They may not realize what they value, but they do value such qualities.
A recent communication I received from a retired business executive said this: “I have researched your writing on the internet and I must say I am very impressed. As a former business executive, I always tried to include (high moral values) in the employee evaluation and promotion matrix.” He went on to lament the fact that corporate America does not do more to teach people how to build strong character.
Learn how to build strong character in business and you’ll stand out.
You can learn how to build strong character by reading proactive books written for that purpose. With their help, take these necessary four steps:
· Understand: Look for definitions first. You can’t put up a house if you don’t know what a house is. Get clear definitions of moral qualities you want to construct. Break down the definition and understand every part. Write it in your own words. Think of practical applications. When would you need the trait? How would you exercise it? What would you expect to happen when you exercise it?
· Desire: Once you understand particular moral qualities, develop a thirst for them. If you planned to erect a stunning mansion, you would develop a huge desire for that mansion. Do the same for moral qualities. Think of how they will improve life. Think of how you will feel. Think of how your friends will look at your transformation. It isn’t enough to understand compassion. You must long to be compassionate.
· Set Goals: Desires are vital, but they aren’t enough. You must set goals – due dates by which your effort to discover how to build strong character reaps measurable results. Contractors set goals. They give an approximate date by which they expect your mansion to be completed. Contractors set intermediate goals to help meet big goals: dates for completion of foundation, framework, roofing, plumbing, electric, etc. Do the same with moral qualities. Set dates by which you will have built them to transformational points, with intermediate goals along the way.
· Action: Finally, make conscious, daily effort to set blocks of high moral values into your life. The contractor for your mansion will get nowhere if he or she stops at goal-setting. Your mansion won’t materialize out of desires and goals. Without conscious, consistent daily work, you will be left with a vacant plot of land. There has to be action. Likewise, your effort to learn how to build strong character will result in a vacant lot if you never get beyond goal-setting. You must force yourself to daily action.
Learn how to build strong character, become the model of total transformation you can become, and you will be ready to help others do the same thing. Part Two of this article will consider how you can help young people.