If any time in my life has been ‘transitional,’ now certainly is (I graduate in 3 weeks; Bryan and I are moving to DC in a month; I’m starting my first full-time job in August). Somewhat counterintuitively, during times of transition I find myself reflecting on the friends I’ve made, friends I want to keep in touch with, and acquaintances I wish were friends.
A few months back, I stumbled on a blog in which the author listed his arbitrary “most admired character traits.” I’m sorry; I can’t find it on the web/blogosphere anywhere now. But reading it inspired me to compile my own list and standards of most valuable character qualities. I’ve returned to this today. I think reading them centers me – How am I acting toward others? Would I want to be friends with myself? What insecurities might my friends have (I think many of these are correlated with self-confidence)? Who is just flat-out a wonderful, thoughtful, exemplary friend?
In my last post I asked: “How many close friends can you really truly have?” I think about this often because I enjoy people; I enjoy meeting unique personalities, and stories. But it’s important to me that their novelty isn’t the only reason I befriend them. It’s important to me that I’m invested in their life – their joys and trials. That’s when I consider them truly a close friend.
And so, without further mumbo-jumbo philosophical opinions, I’ve included my list of character qualities I most admire (and covet); these are the characteristics I most want to cultivate in myself:
- Earnest humility. Hardworking.
- Willingness to learn.
- Willingness to admit mistakes.
- Knowing you don’t know it all.
- Respect for the unknown.
- Selflessness in daily life (loving friends & strangers; wanting to help).
- Natural gratitude – awareness of indebtedness and blessings.
- General Confidence.
- Having Personal Style.
- Genuine happiness for others’ victories.
- Admiration without jealousy.
- Honesty – fearlessly honest in order to bond with others.
- Understanding that most people are not acting against them but in conjunction with innate characteristics.
- Respect for peoples’ reason & beliefs.
- Ability to hold a great conversation.
- Present listening.
- Not influenced by others’ physical appearances (they’re overweight but they’re pretty. — fill in the blank, etc)
What do you think? Are there character qualities you wish came more easily? Or any traits your friends have that you’re supernaturally drawn to?
PS: If I’ve ever addressed you as “friend,” please know you’re already a pro at so many if not ALL – of these qualities. LOVE YOU, FRIENDS!