I respect someone who takes a stand on a point. One who is educated enough about something to come to a conclusion and stick to it. I respect a man with a backbone, as they call it. Having a backbone is a good quality, if managed properly. My view on characteristics in general is that all characteristics are good and turn bad when mismanaged. This logic excludes mental illness obviously. Having a backbone is good, standing for something is good.
I make sure I try to look at things from angles other than ones I agree with. For instance, I find it interesting to read FoxNews and CNN. In political races I watch both sides of the aisle so I can be educated on what I actually support. Educating myself in order to make an intelligent decision when it comes to voting is of the utmost importance. There are far too many uneducated voters, folks who simply vote based on emotion. Politics is the greatest example of mismanagement of good a characteristic. Having that backbone is twisted in an off way and we know more about what candidates dislike or are against rather than what they are for. I call it having an inverse backbone. Having a strong stance on something you are against, only being critical.
I worked with a guy once who had a very simple rule when it came to meetings. His rule was that if you are going to be critical that you have a solution for the dilemma you bring to the table. I’m part of a community forum and have noticed a theme of inverse backbones, which has become bothersome and think it’s a subject that needs to be discussed. Is it acceptable to simply take strong opposing views on things without ever clarifying what it is that you stand for? Is it acceptable to only be a source of criticism? Is it acceptable to always be the ringing bell of negativity?
Most times complex things can be reduced to simple concepts. In this case we will work with 2 words, destruction and construction. I look at things as either destructive or constructive. If you rip a building down to its foundation and build nothing on it what good does it do? Maybe it could be a killer basketball court or place to play foursquare, but when it comes to inhabitation it serves zero purposes. When discussing anything you can either destroy or build up. Destruction alone, like the house analogy, makes the discussion meaningless, outside of games, or debating for sport. Critiquing something is perfectly acceptable, but why critique without a suggestion? Why tear down without offering an equal amount of effort to build up? Shouldn’t we offer balance? I’m not aware of anyone who is constantly negative and critical who has many fans. These people are looked down upon and avoided because they are destructive forces who suck the energy out of a room. People of balance are well liked individuals because they aren’t overbearing on either end, not too high and not too low.
Self-reflection and evaluation are always healthy. What kind of person are you? Are you a source of destruction or construction? Do you only have the inverse backbone?