It’s not enough to just to be willing to admit the truth. Many folks will do that, especially after they’ve been caught lying. Rather, it’s more important to truly revere the truth. A solid character knows the value of the truth – its power to heal, to empower, and to free. But it’s always a choice to embrace the truth – a choice truly decent characters freely make.
The most disastrous relationships I’ve witnessed over the years all began with a “con” of some sort. Sometimes the deception was both knowing and deliberate but other times the wool was not so calculatingly pulled over the eventual victim’s eyes. There are times in all of our lives when we simply don’t trust our better judgment – when we won’t let ourselves see what we’re afraid to see – or when we simply can’t accept what seems too unsettling or unimaginable to believe.
Narcissists hate to think anyone “has their number,” so to speak. People who always see themselves as superior to others hate to see the field of “play” (i.e. social interaction) leveled. They especially hate it when someone else in is a position of greater power or authority.
The antics of two public figures have illustrated the cardinal features of character dysfunction with such clarity that I think it fair to dub the actor Alec Baldwin and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford the new poster children for character disturbance.
Kids who have a lot going for themselves and know it well can easily get a swelled head. And, if their parents and others make the all-too-common but almost always fatal mistake of heaping recognition and praise upon them for their God-given (or, if you prefer, nature-endowed) gifts instead of the conscientious exercise of their will, they’re quite likely to end up thinking far too much of themselves.
It’s the senseless and remorseless use and abuse of others that defines psychopathic predators.
Psychopaths are predatory aggressors who often prey on others merely for the pure pleasure of it.
Legitimate, genuine, potentially lasting change – always manifests itself in the here-and-now moment.
Traditional frameworks can be not only ineffective but also frighteningly enabling sometimes when it comes to understanding and dealing with character dysfunction.
2012 was a banner year for consultations. And I owe a big “thank you” to everyone who contacted me. I can truly say that I got as much if not more out of the experience than I trust those with whom I visited did.