Analyzing Character eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 522 pages of information about Analyzing Character.
for example, who is very modest, retiring and diffident, who lacks self-confidence, who imagines that he is unattractive, unintelligent, and below the average in ability.  You and all the rest of his friends, on the other hand, know that he has genuine talent, that he has an unusually attractive personality once his self-consciousness has been laid aside, that he is intelligent and far above the average in ability.  Contrariwise, you may know someone who vastly over-estimates himself, whose own opinion of himself is at least fifty per cent higher than that of his relatives and immediate acquaintances.  If other people, therefore, do not understand themselves, is it not at least probable that you do not understand yourself?  So universal is this lack of self-under standing that the poet expressed a real human longing when he said: 

“Oh, wad some power the giftie gie us
To see oursels as others see us! 
It wad frae mony a blunder free us
      And foolish notion: 
What airs in dress and gait wad lea’e us
      And even devotion!”

Careful analysis of yourself, however, with your own intimate knowledge of the depths of your being will do more than give you an understanding of your own character.  It will give you a better understanding of some, at least, of the laws and principles of character analysis.  For this reason, it will also give you a far more intimate understanding of others.


When you have learned what certain physical characteristics indicate, practise observing these indications amongst the people whom you know well.  Try your skill at making the connection between the indication and the characteristics which, according to the science, it indicates.  For example, go over in your mind all of the blondes you know and trace in their dispositions and characters, as you know them, the evidences of volatility, love of variety, eagerness, exuberance, positiveness, and other such characteristics.  Take careful note as to how these qualities manifest themselves; observe differences in degrees of blondness, and corresponding differences in the degrees in which the characteristics indicated show themselves.  Observe, also, how the various characteristics manifest themselves in combination.  For example, note the difference between a blonde with a big nose and a blonde with a small nose.


When you have analyzed yourself and your relatives, friends and acquaintances, you will be ready to begin on the analysis of people previously unknown to you.  You will find them everywhere—­in street-cars, in stores, on the streets, in churches and theaters, on athletic fields, in offices, in factories, in schools and in colleges.  When you have analyzed them as carefully as you can and, if possible, have written

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Analyzing Character from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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