Recognizing your Character Defects

By Laura Berens

Character defects: Anger, Dishonesty, Anxiety, Fear, Dependency, Closed Mindedness….
There are many different kinds and types of character defects one may have, and more and more I’ve come to realize it’s all about RECOGNIZING them. Once you have recognized a character defect in yourself you have started your process of change. After you recognize it, you can then actually stop the act, and redirect it if you truly want to change and work on that behavior.
I can only speak for myself on this but a couple character defects I know that I process are anxiety and sometimes obsession. It’s not an obsession that disrupts my life too bad as sometimes it actually is an obsession that does well for me. Take for instance a project at work that’s really important to me. I usually think, analyze and slightly obsess about what to do, how it will go, or how it will end. Sometimes that’s a great thing for me as I do my best work and won’t stop until it’s done right and will probably put in more time than others. But sometimes it is disruptive. When I get focused on something I tend to think about it more frequently than other things in my life until it’s passed.
This week I was driving home after a lunch meeting and starting thinking about a few certain people in my life. I started analyzing things like, what their last text message really meant, or how they reacted last time I talked to them, or just trying to figure out their motive. I went on for about five straight minutes thinking about all these things and then all of a sudden stopped. I said, Laura, you are using one of your character defects right now and your obsessing about this. You have no control of what other people do or say and you can’t read their minds. And this time it’s not healthy. So, I redirected that thought to something more positive which was a project I’m working on for my personal business. I immediately felt better and also was proud of myself that more and more I’m recognizing the character defects in my life that could be disrupting me negatively and not positively. Who wouldn’t want to put more focus on things they CAN control over others they can’t. Otherwise, it’s just mindless thinking and honestly it’s taking up more brain space than what’s needed. I actively try to make sure my thoughts are productive ones that are conducive to me continually becoming a better, healthier person.
What character defects do you have that you think are impacting you negatively and how can you make sure to recognize them while they are happening or even before they start? How can you be prepared to redirect those defects to something in a more positive light?

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