5 Vices to Master
When you think of Homer Simpson and Garfield, Scrooge and the Grinch, Miranda Priestly (Devil Wears Prada) and Wilhelmina Slater (Ugly Betty), specific characteristics come to mind. While amusing to watch on the screen, it becomes a different story when these things play out in our own lives. These moral flaws, evil practices or unhealthy habits are called vices, which we’re all guilty of. But how do they affect us? Here are the top 5 vices to master and the reasons why we should work to overcome them.
1.) Anger. One of the most toxic emotions, anger is sometimes hard to control especially in the heat of the moment. But if you know what it does to your body, you’ll want to tame it. Anger and hatred are related and can lead to psychosomatic illnesses (physical illnesses that come from the influences of the mind). According to Dr. Cynthia Thaik, research shows that “even one five-minute episode of anger is so stressful that it can impair your immune system for more than six hours.” (For more on this, read her tips on how to overcome anger and hatred.)
2.) Lust. More than lusting after a person like an object and gratifying your own desire, make love the target, which isn’t fleeting or selfish but lasting. What is love? To start, you can’t really love a person without knowing or spending time with him/her. Love is putting value in the other person or group, holding them dear and caring for them. And sometimes it’s a choice more than a desire.
“Lust is temporary, romance can be nice, but love is the most important thing of all. Because without love, lust and romance will always be short-lived.” -Danielle Steel
3.) Greed. The intense desire for wealth or power can lead to unjustified or excessive behavior. Greed puts value and worth in possessions instead of important intangibles like building character and experiences. Here’s what the classic novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky said in The Brothers Karamazov:
“The world says: “You have needs — satisfy them. You have as much right as the rich and the mighty. Don’t hesitate to satisfy your needs; indeed, expand your needs and demand more.” This is the worldly doctrine of today. And they believe that this is freedom. The result for the rich is isolation and suicide, for the poor, envy and murder.”
4.) Pride. There are two types, the good and the bad. The harmless kind is when you find satisfaction and joy from life’s achievements. The toxic kind of pride translates into arrogance, self-centeredness, and stubbornness that prevents a person from admitting mistakes or wrongdoing. This can lead to ugly power trips, derogatory behavior, prejudice, and a bad reputation. Instead, strive to be a little more humble and less egotistical. You’ll burn less bridges and make more friends.
“Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real.” -Thomas Merton
5.) Laziness. Laziness leads to negligence, which leads to a messy closet, piled up dishes and work left undone due to a lack of effort. Having a lazy work mindset gives you the permission to easily give up and hinders you from becoming your best and smartest.
“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” – Albert Einstein