Prudence as a Character Strength - Happiness Academy
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Prudence as a Character Strength

Prudence as a Character Strength
1 January, 2022
Dear friends, my name is Valia and I am one of the founders of Happiness Academy. I am going to make this January 2022 quest (in Happiness Accelerator app) for developing prudence personal, because it turns out that this is my least developed character strength. Before we start together to go through the daily Prudence-Booster activities and all other content, designed to sustain our motivation, let’s figure out what prudence is, why it is considered a character strength and how it contributes to our wellbeing.

Prudence is one of the four character strengths, comprising the virtue of temperance. Temperance is in a way the opposite of courage. While courage is about taking action when needed, temperance is about abstaining from acting in a way that that might lead to bad or undesirable results. The other three temperance character strengths are: forgiveness, humility and self-regulation. Prudence among them is the one responsible for making careful decisions and controlling impulsive actions until risks can be reasonably assessed and managed. Prudence means to stop and think before acting. Count to ten before you say or do something that you might regret, as your grandmother would say.

This does not mean that prudent people do not take risks. On the contrary, they do, but they think and research carefully before they make a decision. They weigh the pros and cons and have a plan B. They do this not only before taking a decision, but also in the process of implementing it, when new information appears that gives new light to the situation. Prudence also means long term orientation - having the long term goals in mind when making short term decisions.

According to the book “The Power of Character Strengths: Appreciate and Ignite Your Positive Personality” by prof. Ryan M. Niemiec & prof. Robert E. McGrath, research findings associate prudence with the following benefits, for the people who master it:

  • intelligence and optimism;
  • better physical health, job performance and student achievement;
  • productivity and the ability to be conscientious;
  • cooperativeness, assertiveness, interpersonal warmth, and insightfulness;

Join me in enhancing prudence as a character strength and enjoy ☺.
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