How to Build Character: 11 Steps to Success

How to build characterHow to build character is a question many people ask me frequently.

Whether it’s someone seeking to build their character or wanting to help improve someone else’s character, it’s a question that concerns many of us.

However, there is an obvious supplementary question. What do we mean by character?

There’s a difference between being a character and being a person of character.

The former expression just refers to someone being a little bit eccentric, perhaps a natural wit, or even a raconteur. However, that’s not the subject of this post, despite those being admirable qualities, of course.

The point being considered here is how to become a person of character.

So what does it mean to be a person of character?

First of all, people of character usually do what is right regardless of whether they’re being watched or not.

They also display traits such as honesty, integrity, courage, manners, self-reliance, commitment, and determination.

The comedian Will Rogers once jokingly observed that to be of character, people should “live in such a way that they wouldn’t be ashamed to sell their parrot to the town gossip.

So being of good character is an important thing to be, I think.

Developing good character:

If achieving sustained success is your aim, then talent alone isn’t enough. Talent might get you into the limelight briefly, but without strong character, you’re unlikely to remain there for too long.

The process of developing good character is one that is ongoing too. So you have to keep working on it.

Essentially, a person’s character is composed of three things:

  1. Values: having the right values and knowing what matters most.
  2. Doing what is right: even when no one is watching.
  3. Being a decent person: means showing wisdom, honesty, integrity, love, humility, loyalty, courage, compassion, empathy, self-awareness, and a willingness to recognize fair criticism.

We all have at least some work to do if we are to become and remain people of good character.

This is an area where constant improvement is necessary, however good you may be right now.

Some people may be well on the way to being of good character, while others may still have a lot of work to do.

However, those that are still some way off can change, and they can grow in character. You can be better if you want to be better, and you can practice the habits necessary. These include:-

How to build character:

How to build character1. Decide you’ll be better:

As mature adults, our first duty is to take care of ourselves and to be the best people we can be. To live lives worthy of respect. So decide to be the person you really could be.

2. Ask searching questions:

It is a fact that too many people go to their graves with their full potential unrealized.

They never quite develop their characters to the point where they leave a genuine legacy and an example for others to follow.

Ask yourself this question: If I were to die tomorrow, how would I be remembered at my funeral?

What would people say about you? What qualities would they use to describe you?

How would you prefer to be remembered?

What would you like people to say about you? And how can you change now to ensure they do?

Depending on the answers to those questions, you may well decide to make a few changes in your life.

3. Step out of your comfort zone:

We grow as people in that area beyond our comfort zone.

So, set yourself some challenges that stretch you.

Don’t fear failure. There’s no such thing. Just opportunities to learn and start again better prepared.

Conquering the challenges you set yourself will help you grow in character.

4. Life-long learning:

It doesn’t matter how good you are; there’s always room for improvement.

Improvement comes through education and learning, whether formal or informal.

That valuable commodity known as experience is gained by doing things, perhaps making some mistakes, and then learning the lessons from those mistakes.

Nothing is more valuable to us than the lessons we learn from the mistakes we make. Those are lessons we’ll never forget.

5. Work on yourself:

To quote the late, great Jim Rohn,Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.We’re all works in progress. Make sure you keep getting better.

Don’t leave them saying, She used to be really good. When they speak of you, make sure they say, “She just keeps getting better. She’s an example to us all. That applies equally to ‘He’ too, of course.

6. Never fear failure:

How often are we reluctant to try something for fear that we might fail?

But what is failure? It’s just an outcome we didn’t want and a lesson to be learned.

So we should embrace our failures. We can use them to our advantage.

If we’re willing to try again, we do so with more information and experience.

Failure is not something to fear; it’s something that allows us to learn.

So, never, ever fear failure.

7. Pursue excellence:

If anything is worth doing, then it’s worth doing properly. The way you live your life is no exception.

8. Add value:

Our contribution to society is in the value we add.

That might be in the example we set or the work that we produce.

We don’t get paid for the hour. What we actually get paid for is the value that we put into the hour. So make sure you leave every situation better than you found it.

9. Accept every challenge:

Never underestimate the importance of taking on a challenge.

A challenge provides us with experience through which we’ll learn powerful lessons.

It’s also the means through which character is developed in the process.

Not only will you learn more about your character, but you’ll also learn about your capacity to achieve.

10. Be determined:

If success is your aim, it won’t happen without hard work and determination.

Being good is not enough. You must be determined to get to where you want to go. That’s everything if success is your aim.

11. Be persistent:

Never accept an answer unless it’s the one you want.

And never accept any outcome as the final outcome unless it’s the one that you want.

Most importantly, never quit until you get to where you want to be or you’ve achieved the goal that you set for yourself.

Remember, winners never quit, and quitters never win.

You can be the winner you can be with determination and hard work.

Where to go from here?

If you recognize the need to change, start with your values.

What values will you live by from now until you are dead?

Now, of course, it’s not just about values, but value too. Be a person with values and of value.

So, what value will you add to the lives of others from now on?

Then think about challenges you could take on to build your character.

In taking on a challenge, we can often surprise ourselves in terms of just how far we can go.

Through a challenge, you can learn new skills, sharpen existing skills, and improve your self-confidence.

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