We have opportunities both morning and evening to indulge in various forms of light, systematic exercises which will push forward the day’s work with zest and vim.
Poise has everything to do with personality, therefore the physical structure must come in for its share of proper attention. No man of refined personality would walk the streets with a soiled face or uncombed hair. Such things do not give poise. They are the evidences of a laggard spirit. The more we exercise the more energetic we become, the surer we are of ourselves, the farther we get in the development of our personality.
[Illustration: Over the Hills and Far Away—Father and Son]
HONESTY, THE CHARACTER BUILDER
Just as the straight line is the shortest distance between two points so is honesty the only proper attitude of one person toward another. Without it there is no understanding possible. It must always remain supreme as a quality without which character becomes a sham, a superficial thing that has no basis in fact. The ability to look the other fellow in the eye is as necessary to character as the foundation is to a house. It comes out of that “great within” which we are now exploring. It arises from the courageous facing of our weaknesses and becomes a part of the man who knows himself and laughs with life, at the mere joy of living, doing, accomplishing ... winning against all odds.
Honesty accompanies a proper self-esteem and its cultivation should become a part of our earliest education. It doesn’t grow anywhere except within ourselves and will never be handed to us on a silver platter. If we fail to find it when we are young it will have small chance of obtaining a grip on us later. It is the one quality with which to crown our highest attributes. It is final proof that we are capable of just thought and square dealing, and is proof positive that we are part and parcel of the wholesome spirit which rules the universe. Its possession is greater than riches for its dividend is happiness and contentment and we cannot go wrong if we so live that we can look any man in the eye and tell him the truth.
To live in the full sense means to be alert. Whatever high moral plane we shall achieve must be held against all temptation. There is no compromise. Self-deceit is nothing less than self-stultification. We only fool ourselves and soon find ourselves slipping down hill. It will be hard climbing getting back. And what of the wear and tear on our ambitions meanwhile!