04 Apr You Are What You Repeatedly Do
Our character is the sum total of our personality traits. It’s our inner nature. Character is our identity as shaped by our moral values and expressed in the principles we live by. It’s who we are inside – and it determines how we live outside. Our character determines our behavior in life – and our behavior in life determines our character.
At Lifebook we believe that a good character is achieved when we turn virtues into habits.
Human beings are habitual animals. Habits, whether good or bad, make up who we are as people. As Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.”
You can consciouly choose the character traits you want to build into your life, but in order to successfully implement them we must break them down into habits and rythyms.
Here are a few examples of powerful virtues and some of their related habits:
1. Exercising everyday
2. Consistently picking up after yourself
3. Being respectfully expressive to your lover even when you’re angry
4. Balancing work and play (more work will always be there)
5. Diligently sticking to a financial budget
6. Committing to and honoring consistent weekly dates with your lover
1. Not blaming others for your thoughts or feelings
2. Owning up to your choices and actions
3. Taking full responsibility for your mistakes (regardless of others involvement)
4. Not relying on others to fulfill needs that you should be taking care of
5. Living your life consciously with the conviction that it is within your control
1. Taking action in the face of fear.
2. Honoring your beliefs and opinions even when it’s uncomfortable
3. Standing up for yourself and protecting the ones you love
4. “Stepping up to the plate” and doing what is necessary in a tough situation
5. Being strong and centered in the midst of chaos or crisis
1. Giving others the benefit of the doubt
2. Being open minded to things you wouldn’t normally agree with
3. Making others feel comfortable and accepted
4. Being considerate and mindful of others’ needs
5. Genuinely asking your partner how their day was and listening intently
1. Being a “Yes Man” and consistently welcoming new challenges, experiences and ideas
2. Smiling and laughing as often as possible
3. Enjoying yourself and your life (naturally making you more enjoyable to be around)
4. Realizing you have enough, and experiencing genuine gratitude for it everyday
5. Knowing that you always have a choice in how you will react, and choosing the healthy/constructive response as often as possible
We create lasting change by breaking our virtues down into habits, and making them a consistent lifestyle.
In order to have an extraordinary life, we must be extraordinary people. In order to be extraordinary people, we must create extraordinary habits.
In your quest to build an extraordinary life, what kinds of extraordinary habits are you COMMITTED to creating? How often will you practice them? Which character traits will strengthen as a result of implementing these habits into your lifestyle?
“Watch you thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”