“Character is doing what’s right when nobody’s looking.”~J.C. Watts, Jr.
Many of us are very good at doing what’s right when the spotlight is on us. We don’t want others to see us as shortsighted – or insensitive, or selfish, or anything negative – so we make sure we are at our best when other’s eyes are turned our way.
But to be at our best – and do our best – when no one may even notice, that’s character.
A project with a tight deadline comes across our desk (or computer screen) and we know it needs to be done and we know no one will know we stayed late to do it. We do it anyway. We witness insensitivities or indecencies and we stand up for what’s right, even though no one’s around to notice us doing it. We have the chance to take credit for being a hero, but we don’t. We stay true to who we are and the best of ourselves we want to be.
Leadership is based at least partially on character. We want to follow leaders that inspire us and bring out the best in us, and we want to be leaders that inspire others and bring out the best in them. This is largely based on character, and one of the best ways to build – and stay true to – our character is to do what is right, even if no one else will notice.
When have you done what’s right, with no witnesses? How did it feel?
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