There are certain qualities that we come into this world with. Whether those qualities are decreed by our genetics or by our environment, they did not require effort or examination. They were our “Givens”.
There are some people who have a strong work ethic. And there are people who have the ability to make us laugh, while others have the ability to move us deeply. Some are good with numbers, while some are savvy at having other’s number. Some have the ability to think outside the box, while other’s design the box.
We all have different innate abilities that we are blessed with. It is easy to rely on these inherited traits; and if they monetize and yield a certain cache, we think that they will sustain us forever. There is, however, a finite value to these innate qualities. At some point, after you have sucked all the marrow out of those “Givens” you find yourself in need. That’s where true character begins. It is not things that come easily, it’s where you have to really work for qualities that were not part of your inherited self.
The reason that developing a new trait is so difficult is because the moment you introduce the notion of a new paradigm, you threaten an existing one. With how much mileage is yielded from those innate abilities, it is hard to turn your back on a consistently reliable resource.
You can’t get rid of something that is innately you, but you can move it out of first position. Understanding when something which used to feed you is now killing you and needs to be retired, is a sign of wisdom. If that quality has ruled despotically for some time, then you have been lost for some time. Time to put another quality in first position and archive this old friend.
A life dedicated to evolution understands that you are introducing and retiring qualities constantly.