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  • Writer's pictureJosh Wymore

1+1: Character is destiny + Lencioni discovers what matters most

Updated: Dec 20, 2023

Hey there! Here’s one leadership idea and one resource I’ve found beneficial this week:

1 idea: Character is destiny

“Character is destiny.” -Heraclitus Several years ago, my wife Emily and I were on a bike ride when she asked, “Would you rather be funny or be holy?” In other words, would I rather be known for entertaining others or my virtue? I answered without missing a beat. “Funny,” I said honestly. She didn’t laugh. Neither did I.

That question haunted me for several years because I knew my answer was the wrong one. I knew I should care about deeper things in life than entertaining other people or being the star of the show, but frankly, my values were what they were.

Then I read Next Generation Leader by Andy Stanley. In it, Stanley argues that our character determines our ultimate success in life. While our talent may open doors for us, our integrity sets the ceiling for what we can handle. Our ability to cope with stress, follow through on difficult commitments, and access wisdom will determine how much responsibility and scrutiny we’re able to shoulder. If we have a plan for our careers, we should have a plan for our character, too.

That book prompted me to realign my values toward deeper things. I won’t be confused for a saint any time soon, but I am glad to say that my answer to Emily’s question has changed. Furthermore, I have taken Stanley’s advice and assembled a plan for developing the kinds of virtue I know I need to possess to become the husband, father, and leader I am meant to be.


What about you?

  • What character flaws are most likely to derail your career down the road?

  • Which virtues could help you avoid those pitfalls?

  • What small steps could you take in the next week to strengthen those critical character traits?

1 resource: Lencioni discovers what matters most

After striving for years to achieve a professional success, leadership guru Patrick Lencioni felt empty. Despite multiple best-sellers and ample fame, nothing he achieved ultimately brought him satisfaction. In this candid conversation with Carey Nieuwhof, Lencioni opens up about grappling with his addiction to accomplishment and his life-changing decision to focus on his faith instead.


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