Social Character and Individual Character

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Achievement is, to a great extent, determined by the individual’s capacities, which in total are established in life as the person’s character. Our individual capacities in life are a combination of a number of factors including our abilities, skills and knowledge in the world, our attributes (our level of clarity of goals, organization, psychological strength, positive energy, high energy level, ambition, and perseverance, amongst others); our endowments (the role our parents played in inspiring us and what they provided us, and the influence of the society we exist in), and our personal values (a belief in being realistic in being realistic or being results-oriented).

Social Character: one person may robust in well within the social conventions of the time; another may not. If the person who fits in well with the social conventions has the abilities, knowledge, energy, organization, attitudes, values, and aspirations in life, he or she can achieve fully within the constraints of the social environment in which he participates. We can articulate that this person has a developed social character. He/she is one with the social ambitions, goals, rules, functioning, etc. of the social institution he participates in.

Assuming the society around him permits for it, a person with social character can set up his own business, raise a family, and achieve a substantial work in the society. On the other hand, if an individual with social character also has a dignified or weighty character, he may even be able to achieve to the level of becoming a CEO or director.

Individual Character: the individual who has developed individual character has the potential to achieve at a far better level. This person thinks out of the box, which in turn opens far better vistas, and a better scope for achievement, success, and victory. That’s not to say that he discards the society he is a part of. On the contrary, he has fully engrossed and assimilated the present social environment and its conventions and thoughts. The difference is that he has taken these a step further by personalizing, individualizing them with his own principles, attitudes, and positive energies.

An example of this would be Steve Jobs when he initially developed Apple Computer. There his desire to make a computer that people were not frightened of or scared by to use was something that went beyond conventional wisdom. The person with individual character rises to the level of his individual ideals and principles.

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