Some things are well worth fighting for. But there’s a way to go about this enterprise that builds as opposed to destroys.
Assertiveness is fair, principled, disciplined, fighting. And it’s the kind of just self-advocacy coupled with mindful concern for the impact on others that defines healthy character.
Willfulness has a positive and negative side. A strong will can be one’s foremost asset. But it can also be a great liability. A properly formed and guided will is essential for sound character.
Disturbed characters know how to spot the conscientious. And they’re eager to exploit and abuse them. Sadly, sometimes overly conscientious folks delude themselves. They think they can “fix” the morally broken among us – those with impaired or absent consciences.
Letting our appetites, aversions, and impulses drive us costs us plenty. We can feel pretty good in moments. But low points inevitably follow. In the process of riding that roller coaster, our soul begins to die. Mindfulness is key to purposeful living. At any given moment we have a choice. We can allow baser inclinations to rule. Or, we can put ourselves squarely at the service of a higher cause. Fully and freely turning ourselves over to something bigger is liberating. Free from the slavery of what usually drives us, we begin to live purposefully and abundantly.
Narcissists refuse to recognize or subordinate themselves to any higher power or authority. They see themselves as above the need. Besides, in their own minds, they’re always right. Reality sometimes clashes with that distorted self-perception. And that can prompt a narcissist’s rage.
Egomaniacal characters are grandiose narcissists. And their grandiosity sometimes borders on the delusional.
It’s hard to develop a balanced sense of self-worth in a culture that promotes and rewards egomaniacal thinking and a sense of entitlement.
Covert narcissism is narcissism under cover. Covert narcissists can be quite lovable and charming. So, beware. What you can’t readily see can hurt you.
To be genuinely open, we have to accept the inevitability of pain. And if we don’t transform any pain we do experience, we’re certain to transmit it.