Tag Archives: character

Revealing the True Colors of Your Opponent

For the past few months, I’ve played in a lot of tournaments and seen all kinds of tennis players. Along with those tennis players, came a variety of personalities and attitudes. One thing that frustrates me about some tennis players is their lack of self-control, class, and sportsmanship.

It’s hard to understand why some girls appear as sweet and friendly when they’re up and turn into jerks when they lose a game or even a single point. As soon as your opponent pulls out their claws, you know you’re in for as show. They start yelling at themselves, hitting themselves, abusing their racket, and using profane language. They lose all sense of control and even begin making bad line calls. They might even start questioning your calls.

This can be hard to cope with on the court, especially when you’re winning. It can be difficult to keep yourself optimistic when your opponent is acting like an animal. When I played a girl like that in the past few weeks, I struggled to keep the anger that was building inside of me contained. I was able to because I was disciplined and had class, but that wasn’t the case for the girl on the other side of the net. While I may have been winning for a while, I let her ridiculous actions get the best of me and had the match slip from my hands. So what.

A lesson came from that match and it is something I’ll never forget. Regardless of the outcome, I know I outclassed her and acted like one should on the court. If your opponent begins acting like a monster, ignore it, be yourself, and kill them with kindness. Allow your opponent to dig themselves a hole and self-destruct. Never let that kind of silliness get to you. When you play your best and ignore your opponent’s actions, you’re going to succeed.

Just remember this, play with class. If you choose to lose self-control and respect for your opponent and yourself, remove the “c” and the “l” and now see what you are.

revealing the true colors of your opponent and tennis

Zest is the Best

This is the last trait for the 8 Ways to a Happier You series, zest. After this, I hope that you will be able to apply this trait as well as the seven previous character traits to become a happier person and make a difference in the lives of those around you. Here’s zest.

Zest is the ability to tackle life and all that is in it with energy, enthusiasm, and eagerness. It’s having an optimistic attitude and perspective in all that you do.

Having zest matters because those who are zestful are generally more satisfied, successful, and enjoy what they do with their lives. Zestful people “tend to see their work as a calling” (Janes), in a good way, and use their positive energy to work hard and brighten others’ days.

To become a more zestful person, do what you love. It’s hard to be optimistic and eager to go to do something if you don’t enjoy it. Become a more social person. This may be somewhat difficult for those who prefer not to be social but you can still do it. Interact with people that are close to you and be welcoming to people you meet. You don’t have to say anything but a simple smile or gentle wave will usually help boost social skills and confidence. Another way to improve on zest is to surround yourself with other zestful people. This trait is very contagious so surround yourself with others that have a lot of enthusiasm, energy, and are interested in you and life.

Zest truly is the best! You can become a more social, optimistic person by improving this trait. Don’t worry if you are overwhelmed by zestful people or working on the trait for yourself. Take a walk, get some air, and allow yourself some space to breathe if you are feeling overwhelmed or “hit by the blahs”. Becoming more zestful won’t come over night but it will come over time with work.

This has been a very interesting series to work on. With every blog post on each of the eight traits, I’ve been trying to apply them to my life.

zest

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.

Grateful for Gratefulness

Gratefulness is the trait of being able to recognize the good in others, yourself, and the world around you, appreciate the goodness, embrace it, and then give back your thanks in whatever way you can whether it be community service, your job, a talent, sports, or academically.

There’s being thankful and there’s also being grateful. There is a difference. Gratefulness differs from thankfulness in that being grateful is when a person expresses true gratitude and motivates others to be generous and pay it forward. Doing this produces joy and you will mostly likely gain more support from the person by expressing gratitude. Being thankful on the other hand, will still demonstrate to others that you are thankful and appreciate what they have done for you however thank you’s are so banal that most people overlook them now.

To become a more grateful person, think about what you can be grateful for every day. It could be that you have a roof over your head, another day to live, good friends and family, an education, food, or anything else that you can think of. It’s never a bad idea to look for the little things in life to be grateful for. Another way to become more grateful is add more detail to your thank-you’s.

Think about what you can be grateful for every day, like I said earlier. Learn to appreciate what you have and be grateful for all things, big, small, good, or bad in life. Whatever is going on will only make you a stronger and better person.

Have a wonderful week!

gratefulness

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.

Social Intelligence is Sweet

I feel like the titles for the 8 Ways to a Happier You series have been pretty cheesy, but that’s alright. I need something to sound creative. 🙂 We’re moving onto the sixth trait this week which is social intelligence. Here we go.

Social intelligence is one’s ability to read between the lines and pick up on the things that people don’t say out loud like the tone of their voice or their body language. Social intelligence is a person’s ability to “pick up on the gray areas of a situation” (Janes). Learning to do this can take time.

Being able to have social intelligence is important because it allows you to learn a lot about people and how they interact. Learning how to read what people don’t say can also help you make new friends and have more fun with your interactions on a daily basis.

To gain social intelligence or improve what you already have, Janes says to think of yourself as a spy bent. Your objective should be to figure out what the person you are interacting with is feeling as opposed to saying. Think about whatever is going on and try to figure out why your friend, partner, or family member is acting the way they are. When you’re trying to figure out why that particular person is acting the way they are, refrain from getting nosy or pushy. Make it apparent that you are only trying to understand what is going on and you want to be there to support that person and have a closer and more understanding relationship. Be smart with what you say and how you respond to what the person you’re interacting with says.

Actions mean more than words, and that is what social intelligence is all about. Be aware of what your friends, family, peers, and others around you are not only saying but how they are acting and what they could be feeling. This is one of the trickier traits to master, but when you do, you’re on your way to becoming a happier person. There are only two more cheesy titles to go!

Have a good week! 🙂

social intelligence

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You”. 2016. Print.

Gotta Love Love

Happy Easter! Love is around us all day, with friends, family, pets, jobs, and the activities we do on a daily basis. Love is the fifth trait of 8 Ways to a Happier You and it can be a difficult trait to understand and master. By getting to know what the trait it, why it matters, and how to become a more loving person, you will become a much happier and more loving person.

Love is the close, caring relationships where good vibes flow both ways (Jane). It is the intense, deep feeling of affection people have for one another.

Love is important to people because it helps one get through tough times, enjoy the good times, and become the best person you can possibly be. Love helps you support, understand, and care for the people close to you. It allows you to build strong, healthy relationships with the people in your life.

You can improve this trait by working on your relationships with friends and family through the ups and downs. No matter what is going on, stick by their sides and be there to support and help them out. Building off of previous traits, be curious with your friends, family, or significant other. Ask them new questions and be daring to try new things and make new traditions with them. Adding onto grit, be understanding that your relationship will have its rough times and fight hard to work things out. Be optimistic and know that whatever happens between you and your friend, boyfriend, girlfriend, parents, or whoever it is will happen for the better.

By nurturing your relationships, being open to loving, and building off of the previous traits, self-control, grit, curiosity, and optimism, you can become a happier and more loving person.

Have a wonderful Easter Sunday and have a great week!

love

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.

Always Have Optimism

We’re already halfway through 8 Ways to a Happier You. This week’s trait is optimism. Here it goes.

Optimism is hopefulness and confidence about the future and coming success. It’s a person ability to see the glass as half full as opposed to half empty.

In a negative situation, optimistic people are able to find the “silver lining” or see the good in whatever is going on. They can problem-solve to resolve the issue and improve their mood as well as the moods of others.

In order to become a more optimistic person, you should learn to take a different perspective on activities or certain events in your life that pull you down or make you upset. For example, two years ago in tennis, I went on a fairly long losing streak. I was upset with myself and the hole I dug for myself just kept getting harder and harder to get out of. Then one day, I decided that enough was enough. Yes, it sucked that I had lost my last nine matches in a row. But, I learned to be humble and accept that I had been playing terrible tennis. I knew that after this “valley” in my tennis career, I would play much better and I just had to look forward to that and I eventually got out of my hole and played better than I did before. To become more optimistic, accept the situation you’re in, find something good to look forward to, and push towards that, no matter what anyone says or does. You can do it!

So whether, it’s sports, school, your relationships, work, or anything else, find something to be optimistic about. Some things might not be going well but it’s going to get better. There is light at the end of the tunnel.

optimism

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.

Curious About Curiosity?

Here’s trait #3 from 8 Ways to a Happier You by Beth Janes, curiosity. If you want to become a happier person, you need to be able to have curiosity and be willing to try new things. But what exactly is curiosity and how can you become a more curious person? Here’s how.

Curiosity is the penchant for seeking out new and different experiences and adventures. It’s the ability to not fear trying new foods. activities, and experiences. People that are curious more likely to push themselves to learn new material and improve on what they already know. They’re better problem solvers too. Being curious allows a person to explore their options and ways of finding a solution to a problem. During this process they will be able to learn more about themselves and others as well as have fun with what they’re doing.

To work on becoming a more curious person, think more creatively on how to solve problems and ask questions. Building off of the previous trait, grit, be willing to dig deep and try hard to accomplish your goals. You could work on this by not asking the typical, “How was your day?” question. The typical response is, “Good,” and then the conversation ends. You could build a stronger relationship, learn more about your family members and friends, as well as have a solid conversation. Ask more creative questions like, “What was something fun that you did today?” or “What interesting things happened today?”. Questions like that would probably generate a better conversation and improve one’s curiosity.

Curiosity will help you become a happier person. It will help you become a better problem-solver, learn more about yourself and others, and become a more creative person. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Don’t be afraid to fail. You’ll only grow from whatever you are curious about.

Have a good week!

curiosity

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.

Grit is Great

In a previous blog, I discussed self-control and why it is an important trait to have. The second character trait from the article 8 Ways to  a Happier You, is grit. Grit is another important trait to have that will make you a tougher, stronger person and also a happier person.

Grit is “the raw endurance, perseverance and passion that keeps you going despite obstacles” (Janes). Grit is the fight a person has inside them to push themselves to get going or keep up with what they want to accomplish. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Whatever you’re doing may not be easy or fun but whatever it is that you’re doing will get you closer and closer to your goals. For example, I’m in physical therapy strengthening my ankle and getting ready for my high school tennis season. I want to be ready to play in February and I want to be strong when I train and compete. I’ve been doing squats, lunges, core workouts, some running, and a whole bunch of other exercises that make me pretty sore some days. Yeah, it hurts, but I have to be gritty, toughen up, get through my exercises, and understand that all of the soreness only means that I’m getting stronger and doing good things for my body. I want to be able to play at the beginning of the season this year, since I missed the beginning of last season due to my previous foot injury and that drives me to work extra hard.

Grit requires passion and a person has to be motivated and fired up to accomplish their goals and be successful in whatever they do.

Grit is a character trait that is great to have, just like self-control. Grit motivates you to keep working hard and doing whatever you’re doing despite opposition and obstacles. Challenge yourself to try new things and push yourself to work hard and follow through on the difficult challenges and events in your life whether it’s in sports, school, or work. Grit really is great.

grit

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.

The Importance of Self-Control

Currently in my language arts class, we are reading an article titled 8 Ways to a Happier You. The article summarily describes, explains, and gives tips on how to exhibit eight character traits that will help a person reach their potential and become a happier person. The first trait was self-control which is a crucial character trait to have as a person.

Self-control is the ability to control your own ideas, attitude, and actions in order to reach goals, despite distractions and temptations to stray.

This character trait is important to have because it allows a person to stay on task in work, school, or sports, follow rules or certain guidelines, complete assignments and study for school in a timely manner, get up in the morning and go to bed at a reasonable time (I struggle with this), have discipline, go to the gym, accomplish goals, and so many other things.

Unless you were born a genius or super fit, and strong person, it will probably be impossible to get good grades in school or lose weight and become stronger if you don’t study and work hard or push yourself to run and get to the gym, as an example. Having the self-control to take time out of your day to complete homework, read your textbooks, or run a few miles and maybe work out at the gym will help you accomplish your goals of being a successful student or a stronger, fit person.

Self-control is an important trait to have because it “pushes you to make the difficult choice over the immediately appealing option for a result that will eventually pay off” (Janes). Self-control forces you to work hard, challenge yourself, and make tough decisions. Once you’ve decided to challenge yourself and have self-control in one area of your life, you can move onto another aspect of your lifestyle and challenge yourself there. You’ll already know what it feels like to have self-control in a particular area of your life, so you should have the confidence and mindset that you can actually accomplish your goals and whatever you’re doing will get easier with time.

So if you don’t already have self-control, work towards developing it! Talk about your goals and ideas and follow through with them. You’ll become a happier person in the long run because you were able to set goals for yourself and actually accomplish them.

self-control

Janes, Beth. “8 Ways to a Happier You.” 2016. Print.