Dimensions of CHARACTER (Part 1)


the more resilient I can be in life

PREVIOUS: Principles of C

BOOK: “Born Entrepreneurs, Born Leaders: how your genes affect your work life” ~ Scott Shane

NOTE: The focus of these posts are the healthy, positive, useful character traits. Naturally we all exhibit the negative version of them as well (some listed in future post), but as we heal from our damage we can express the very best of ourselves, especially our more outstanding traits.

: No one has all of these positive qualities in the same proportions or intensity. Our goal is to identify in ourselves as many as we can, appreciate them, hone them – as well as accept & strengthen those we are weak in.
✶ DO NOT let Self-Hate be your guide in listing your innate ASSETS!

Many studies, including those from Positive Psychology, have defined & classified Character, naming it as the key to understanding what makes up a psychologically good life.

Michael Baizerman, Professor of Youth Studies at the U of  MINN, writes that Personal Strengths or competencies are associated with healthy development & life success. He calls it “phenomenological resilience,” which can be observed & measured.
• From a recent post on Control (Types of Self-Control, #3):  “Ego resiliency”  is the flexible & appropriate expression of self-control, in the face of uncertainty, change & environmental demands. Without it people tend to become over- or under-controlled.” Baizerman says the following qualities do not cause resilience, but rather allow it to flourish:

• Autonomy : Adaptive Distancing, Humor, Initiation, Internal Locus of Control, Mastery, Mindfulness, Positive Identity, Resistance, Self-Awareness, Self-Efficacy
• Problem Solving : Critical Thinking, Flexibility, Insight, Planning, Resourcefulness

Sense of Purpose : Achievement motivation, Creativity, Educational aspirations, Faith, Goal direction, Hope, Imagination, Optimism, Special interest, Spirituality, Sense of meaning
• Social  Competence
: Altruism, Caring, Communication, Compassion, Empathy, Forgiveness, Responsiveness

2. As PREDICTORS : This list is used by KIPP NYC, a non-profit network of free, public predictorscharter schools preparing students for success in college & life.  They’re mainly focused on 7 highly predictive CS, based on Dr. Seligman’s work:
• Curiosity  : Students are eager to explore new things.  Ask & answer questions to deepen understanding.  Actively listen to others
• Grit : Finish whatever they begin. Try very hard even after experiencing failure.  Work independently with focus
• Gratitude : Recognize & show appreciation for others AND for ones own opportunities
• Optimism: Get over frustrations & setbacks quickly. Believe that effort will improve their future

• Self-Control – School work : Students come to class prepared.  They pay attention & resist distractions. Remember & follow directions. Get to work right away, rather than procrastinating
• Self-control – Interpersonal : Remain calm even when criticized or otherwise provoked.  Allow others to speak without interruption. Are polite to adults & peers. Keep temper in check

• Social Intelligence :  Able to find solutions during conflicts with others.  Demonstrate respect for the feelings of others. Know when and how to include others
• Zest : Actively participate.  Show enthusiasm.  Invigorate others

3. At WORK :  Another grouping is the DISC Assessment System

D = Dominant personality, also known as type “A”. Outgoing with a strong desire to get things done. Need constant stimulation & activity, becoming easily bored. Natural strengths:
Ds are: • able to juggle priorities  • born leaders  • high achieversDISC
• clear communicators  • don’t accept rejection  •  great multi-taskers • self-motivated  • Get more accomplished than any other type

I  = Inspiring personality, also outgoing 
like the D, but more interested in fun!
Is are:  • creative thinkers   • energetic •  extroverted   • imaginative   •  optimistic  • great at persuading & motivating others  •   people oriented  • relationship builders

S = Sweet personality, which says it all. These people love to help others.  Even though they are more reserved than the first two types, they still like to build relationships just like the “I” personalities.
Ss are:  • caring  •  great finishers  •  quality producers  • peace-makers  • sentimental   •  relationship builders   • team builders  •  mediators

C = Cautious personality, always thinking. They’re reserved, task oriented & perfectionists. They may not talk much, but when they do it’s important
Cs are:   • cost-conscious   •  deep thinkers  •  great researchers   •  planners   • quality-driven  •  resourceful    • systematic  •  task-oriented

NEXT: Dimension of C, Part 2

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