Sound character begins with keen self-respect.

No one really knows for sure how we develop self-respect, but the experts believe it begins at a very early age. Parents who show their children that they love them unconditionally — just because they are who they are — build a foundation of healthy self-respect that will sustain the children for the rest of their lives.

If you don’t believe it yourself, don’t ask anyone else to do so

It is virtually impossible not to transmit your doubts and insecurities to others through body language, tone of voice, inflection, word choice, and other subtle characteristics. When you show by your actions that you lack self-confidence, other people also begin to doubt your ability to perform.

The value of actions depends on the courage they require.

Ordinary people who do extraordinary things for others are those we later call heroes. When asked why they performed as they did, they often say, “It was nothing anyone else wouldn’t have done in the circumstances.” Perhaps that’s their way of saying we all have the capacity for greatness. It is only when we are severely tested that we rise to the occasion and perform at the highest levels of our competence.

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