Acting Out Of Character
I was having a good discussion with some of my colleagues in a Mastermind and I wanted to share the conclusion with you. We were talking about the two versions of acting out of character, one negative and one positive, that exist in complete opposition to each other.
When most of us think about acting out of character it’s related to doing things out of integrity. When someone does something unethical, deceitful, or out of alignment with their best self, that’s typically thought of as being "out of character". This is because you have a certain set of values that you aim to uphold in your actions, and any deviation from that standard is considered out of character.
This has negative consequences for yourself and others because you’re not showing up at your best, compromising all of the goodness you have to offer others. Obviously that’s not ideal and in this way we should try to avoid acting out of character.
But then there’s a second, more creative, more positive way to act out of character. This is when your behavior is inspired by your character. It comes from your character. When you feel pulled to act in accordance with your values, and to be held accountable by them. With a positive reference point you can keep your good intentions top of mind so that they guide your moment by moment decision making. This serves to proactively shut down any potential lapses in character, being able to soften the power of temptation and the allure of making exceptions in pursuit of upholding your values.
What’s really empowering about this distinction is that both options of “acting out of character” surface at the same time. And given how opposite the two definitions are, it presents you with a binary decision. Either you can use your character to inspire you to act in accordance with your values, or you can act in conflict with your higher self. It’s a choice we’re constantly making but we’re often unaware of it. In creating more consciousness around who you want to be, and understanding that you do have a choice in more than you realize, you can follow through on being the best version of yourself.
It requires discipline to consistently make the right choice. Contrary to common belief, self-discipline isn’t something that you just have. It is developed and improved upon like anything else. And the benefits of being more self-disciplined are limitless because it touches all areas of your life, not the least of which is helping you live in alignment with your values and character.
The New Year is fast-approaching and if you aren’t intentional about it, it will pass you by before you ave the chance to make the most of it. Or you can make the choice to get ahead of it and build a foundation that will allow you to conquer more in the New Year than you thought possible. This includes building the habit of self-discipline, and that’s exactly what I’ll help you to do in the Best Self Breakthrough Challenge. If any part of you knows you’re leaving some potential on the table, click here to register for the challenge right now!