A month or so ago, my twin sent us an online character test (here) where they list out the ranking of 24 common human characters, the top being your natural strengths, "the real you", and the bottom, well, they are kindly put as your strengths that come less naturally and require more effort.
My bottom 3?
That's right, Perseverance, HOPE and Prudence. I didn't even know what having prudence provided in life that wasn't seen as a trait associated with a prissy and fussy person (mostly a spinster from the 1900's)... Then I read how this test defined them.
Perseverance- Finishing what one starts; persevering in a course of action in spite of obstacles; “getting it out the door”; taking pleasure in completing tasks. (my million art projects that scatter throughout my studio can attest to that....)
Hope- Expecting the best in the future and working to achieve it; believing that a good future is something that can be brought about.
Prudence- Being careful about one's choices; not taking undue risks; not saying or doing things that might later be regretted. (ironically, with all the risks I take in life, I have had a pretty decent life...)
OH. WTF. HOPE?!??
I'm sure I could go into some depths of my story about my lack of hope, a childhood trauma that has caused me lack hope, etc... but I like to think that these "weaknesses" are ever changing and maybe it's more about where you are in your life. It's not finite. You can grow and nurture hope. You loose hope when you think you can no longer change or grow. And that simply is not true.
You grow when you take risks, when you make the effort to do something, even so minor, repetitively, that while some may not notice, you do. You start changing your path and future. You grow hope. Hope then gives you strength to keep on making those silly minute changes that nobody notices. Hope gives you perseverance.
Your present doesn't define you for the rest of your life. But it does grow you into the future.
I was reminded of this when I went to Mexico City and visited the Museo De Tamayo (HIGHLY recommend) and came upon an earlier Mark Rothko, much more fanciful and figural, but with hints of the future to come. To what he would be known for. A reminder that you can change and evolve, that you don't have to be limited by others perception of you and more importantly, your own perception of you. To have hope. To persevere and I guess, have the prudence??
Oh, and my top 3?
1. Appreciation of beauty and nature
I'm good with that..... ;) and I'm glad I took this test- it was a good wake up call.