Don’t confuse character with reputation. Abraham Lincoln said, ‘Character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.’ Some people spend too much time worrying about the shadow and too little about the tree. Reputation is fragile; character endures.
Good character is ethics in action; it’s the ability to summon the moral strength to do the right thing even when it may cost more than we want to pay.
People of character do the right thing even if no one is looking; they live up to their values even when there is no advantage to do so.
Finally, no one is born with good character. It’s something we all have to build and protect day by day, decision by decision.”
– Michael Josephson