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PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2016 3:58 pm 
Partner's Mentor

Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:38 pm
Posts: 515
In lesson Four, Exercise Four ( ... op_004.php) of the partner's workshop, we are asked to examine our partner's values, and make a list of his traits that we think will survive the recovery process, as well as traits that will present an obstacle later on.

Recently I listened to a podcast that succinctly separated the difference between personality and character. It also examined how we often look first to personality, especially when dating, and think it determines character, when actually the two are very different aspects of a person. This can explain why sometimes if a person is caught doing something harmful/wrong/immoral, people in his/her exterior world are in disbelief: they conflate personality traits with character values.

Here is the podcast link, and the segment in question is the first 10 minutes of the podcast:

I know that in my case, the traits that drew me to my husband were based in personality, not in character or values. It is why the duplicity of his life caught me by surprise: because I conflated traits such as "sense of humor" or "showed caring toward me" as being the same thing as moral character and/or a foundation based on values.

For us here, we might find value in applying this difference when we examine lesson four. It may also help us as we reflect upon what drew us to our partners, and, for those who have partners in recovery, these differences may be something to further reflect upon as your partner potentially changes and grows.

PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 6:14 am 
Partner's Coach (Admin)

Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2007 3:07 pm
Posts: 5200
How interesting. I didn't have time to listen to the whole podcast but I found an article that I gave a quick read to, which says the same thing about people choosing based on personality vs character and values. ... -character

I would argue that personality is also malleable (laziness and shyness, for example, can be overcome and are not innate-using myself as an example. Yes, I will forever remain introverted, but I am not the shy girl I was as a child). Of course, this is based solely on my own experience and interpretation of my experience. My armchair theory is that personality emerges sooner and develops though the formative years, but is learned every bit as much as character, and that character is developed over time with exposure to defining events and experiences.

Definitely worth contemplating while completing lesson 4 (adding lesson 4 into the subject line for searchability).

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom. (Viktor E. Frankl)

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