Rationalizing, or excuse making, is a manipulation tactic. The strategy is simple: get someone to buy into your “explanations,” and your behavior takes on a whole different light. Your intentions look less sinister. And you don’t look so bad in character. Wow! Do bad things, and look good doing them! Now, that’s quite a feat!
Human beings are great self-deceivers. But some of us deceive ourselves so earnestly and so often that we begin to believe our falsehoods, and that really gets in the way of our character growth.
Relationships naturally grow in strength, depth, and wholesomeness in the absence of character disturbance. And when our most important relationships are solid, we can expect the makings of a healthy community. It all starts with character.
Being a positive leader isn’t just about having the requisite skills. Ultimately, leadership is about character.
Thanksgiving means more than a single holiday. Responsible people render it daily in their undertakings. But in this age of rampant narcissism and entitlement, cultivating gratitude is difficult. So, far too few give thanks with their actions. Rather, they take, use, exploit, and injure – all for their own gratification. And they do such things without compunction because they feel entitled.
I have much for which to be grateful. Your validation and promotion of my work has always inspired and sustained me. It’s impossible to say how much such support means to me. So, from the bottom of my heart, “Thank you!”
Years of research solidly point to one crucial factor when it comes to character health: the ability to delay gratification. Such an ability must be carefully cultivated. But in an indulgent world, just learning when and how to say “no” to oneself is difficult. And actually imposing a “no” is even more so.
If there’s one thing we’ve learned about disturbed characters it’s this: They all-too-readily take ownership of what they haven’t earned or merited.
Culture and character have an intertwined and interdependent relationship. And they impact each other in some very dynamic ways. More character-impaired individuals now populate the culture. And they have “enabled” the erosion of principles once widely revered and promoted.
When we live in love and act in love we have the power to change the world. That’s because we ourselves have been transformed.
Embracing the 10 Commandments promotes good character. But doing so also promotes healthy, intimate relationships.