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Inspiration Decks Character Traits 2023-12-02 00:00

Character Trait: Acquiescent

Character Trait Acquiescent

To engage your reader, it's important to always show not tell the traits of your characters. The character trait Acquiescent refers to a person who is inclined to agree or comply with others without objection. An acquiescent person tends to be passive and may go along with others' opinions or decisions without expressing their own. They may avoid conflict or confrontation and may not assert themselves in situations where they disagree with others.

Contents:
  1. Possible causes of being acquiescent
  2. Behaviors associated with being acquiescent
  3. Attitudes associated with being acquiescent
  4. Thoughts and struggles associated with being acquiescent
  5. Emotions associated with being acquiescent
  6. Facial expressions associated with being acquiescent
  7. Body language associated with being acquiescent
  8. Behaviors associated with being acquiescent
  9. Growth and evolution of acquiescent characters
  10. Stereotypes of acquiescent characters to avoid
  11. Negatives of being acquiescent
  12. Positives of being acquiescent
  13. Verbal expressions of acquiescent characters
  14. Relationships of acquiescent characters
  15. Examples from books of characters who are acquiescent
  16. Writing exercises for writing acquiescent characters

Possible causes of being acquiescent

You might want to weave these into your character's back story to build a more believable character.

  • Fear of conflict: Some individuals may avoid confrontation or conflict at all costs, leading them to acquiesce to others' demands to maintain harmony.
  • Desire for approval: Those who seek constant validation or approval from others may acquiesce to avoid rejection or disapproval.
  • Childhood upbringing: If someone was raised in a household where they were constantly told to comply and not question authority, they may develop an acquiescent personality.
  • Lack of self-confidence: Individuals who lack confidence in themselves may feel like they have no choice but to comply with others' wishes.

For detailed feedback on acquiescent characters and other aspects of your writing, try ProWritingAid's literary analysis software.

Behaviors associated with being acquiescent

You may be able to show your character's trait of acquiescent by using these.

  • Accepting a situation as it is without trying to change it
  • Following instructions without questioning them
  • Letting others take the lead or make decisions
  • Complying with requests or demands from others
  • Adapting to the expectations or norms of a group
  • Yielding to the desires or opinions of others
  • Agreeing to do something without objection or resistance
  • Avoiding conflict or confrontation by giving in

Attitudes associated with being acquiescent

You may be able to show acquiescent through their attitudes.

  • Willingness to comply with the wishes or requests of others.
  • Desire to maintain harmony and avoid causing discomfort to others.
  • Tendency to go along with the flow and not rock the boat.
  • Avoidance of conflict and confrontation.
  • Perception of compromise as a positive outcome.
  • Tendency to put others' needs and preferences before one's own.
  • Reluctance to assert oneself or stand up for one's own beliefs.
  • Belief that following rules and expectations is important.

Thoughts and struggles associated with being acquiescent

Here are some ideas for things your acquiescent character may think or struggle with.

  • They may crave approval and validation from others, sometimes at the expense of their own values or desires.
  • They may be highly empathetic and attuned to the needs and feelings of others, sometimes to the point of putting others' needs before their own.
  • They may struggle with decision-making and assertiveness, often deferring to others' opinions or desires rather than expressing their own.
  • An Acquiescent character may struggle with low self-esteem and a lack of confidence in their abilities.
  • They may have a tendency to avoid confrontation and prioritize keeping the peace over speaking up for themselves.
  • They may be easily influenced by others and have a hard time standing up for themselves or their beliefs.
  • They may struggle with setting boundaries and saying "no," often feeling obligated to say "yes" to requests or demands from others.
  • They may feel a sense of guilt or shame when they do assert themselves, as if they are causing conflict or being selfish.

Emotions associated with being acquiescent

Here are some ideas for emotions your acquiescent character may experience.

  • Compliant
  • Meek
  • Submissive
  • Passive
  • Conforming
  • Agreeable
  • Yielding
  • Obedient
  • Docile

Facial expressions associated with being acquiescent

Here are some facial expressions your acquiescent character may exhibit.

• A lack of assertiveness in facial expressions such as raised eyebrows or a firm jawline.

Body language associated with being acquiescent

Here is some body language your acquiescent character may exhibit.

  • Offering little to no input or opinion in group discussions
  • Avoiding eye contact
  • Shrinking in size or posture
  • Fidgeting or playing with objects
  • Nodding frequently
  • Apologizing excessively
  • Smiling or laughing nervously
  • Speaking in a soft or hesitant tone
  • Agreeing to requests or suggestions without much resistance

For detailed feedback on acquiescent characters and other aspects of your writing, try ProWritingAid's literary analysis software.

Behaviors associated with being acquiescent

Here are some behaviors your acquiescent character may exhibit.

  • Yielding to the desires or opinions of others
  • Accepting a situation as it is without trying to change it
  • Letting others take the lead or make decisions
  • Agreeing to do something without objection or resistance
  • Following instructions without questioning them
  • Complying with requests or demands from others
  • Avoiding conflict or confrontation by giving in
  • Adapting to the expectations or norms of a group

Growth and evolution of acquiescent characters

Here are some ways that your acquiescent character may grow and evolve over time.

  • Independence: With increased assertiveness and confidence, the character may start to make decisions independently, rather than relying on others to make decisions for them.
  • Challenge authority: The character may begin to question authority figures and challenge their decisions, rather than blindly accepting them.
  • Develop self-awareness: An acquiescent character might start to recognize their tendency to comply with others' wishes and begin to question why they do so.
  • Gain confidence: As the character becomes more self-aware, they may start to build confidence in their own abilities and opinions.
  • Emotional expression: An acquiescent character may learn to express their emotions more openly, rather than suppressing them to avoid conflict or disapproval.
  • Take risks: With newfound confidence and independence, the character may be more willing to take risks and try new things.
  • Assertiveness: The character may learn to stand up for themselves and assert their own needs and desires, rather than always giving in to others.

Stereotypes of acquiescent characters to avoid

Try to avoid writing stereotypical acquiescent character like these examples.

  • Passive and indecisive
  • Reluctance to take risks or try new things
  • Inability to stand up for themselves or their beliefs
  • Always agreeing with others, even if they don't truly believe in it
  • Emotionally weak and prone to giving up easily
  • Playing the victim and not taking responsibility for their actions
  • Avoiding confrontation at all costs, even if it means sacrificing their own values
  • Lack of confidence in their own abilities
  • Easily influenced and manipulated by others

Negatives of being acquiescent

Here are some potential negatives of being acquiescent. Note: These are subjective and some might also be seen as positives depending on the context.

  • Difficulty in making decisions and asserting one's own opinions
  • Being passive and giving in to others' demands without standing up for oneself
  • Lack of confidence and self-esteem
  • Difficulty in setting boundaries and saying "no" when necessary
  • Tendency to avoid conflicts and confrontations, which can result in unresolved issues and resentment
  • Being taken advantage of or exploited by others who manipulate the acquiescent person's compliance

Positives of being acquiescent

Here are some potential positives of being acquiescent. Note: These are subjective and some might also be seen as negatives depending on the context.

  • Willingness to compromise and find common ground in conflicts
  • Ability to adapt to new situations and environments
  • Tendency to be cooperative and team-oriented
  • Tolerance and acceptance of different opinions and perspectives
  • Willingness to learn from others and consider alternative approaches
  • Ability to see the bigger picture and prioritize the needs of the group over personal interests
  • Readiness to help and support others in achieving their goals
  • Openness to feedback and suggestions from others
  • Capacity to maintain harmonious relationships with others

Verbal expressions of acquiescent characters

Here are some potential expressions used by acquiescent characters.

  • "Whatever you think is best."
  • "I guess I don't really have a say in the matter."
  • "It's not a big deal to me either way."
  • "I don't really have a strong opinion either way."
  • "I'll do whatever you think is right."
  • "I don't want to argue."
  • "I'm fine with whatever decision you make."
  • "I don't want to cause any trouble."
  • "If that's what you want, I can go along with it."

Relationships of acquiescent characters

Here are some ways that being acquiescent could affect your character's relationships.

  • Could be perceived as indecisive or wishy-washy by others
  • Might avoid conflict or confrontation, leading to passive-aggressive behavior
  • Might engage in people-pleasing behavior to avoid upsetting others
  • Might need external validation and reassurance from others
  • May have difficulty setting boundaries and saying no to others
  • Could attract dominant or controlling personalities in relationships
  • May struggle to assert their needs and desires in relationships
  • May struggle with communication and expressing their true feelings

Examples from books of characters who are acquiescent

  • Charlie Brown from the Peanuts comic strip by Charles M. Schulz
  • Winston Smith from 1984 by George Orwell
  • Jane Eyre from Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  • Holden Caulfield from The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  • Billy Bibbit from One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey
  • Oy from The Dark Tower series by Stephen King
  • Bella Swan from Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
  • Lenny from Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
  • Arthur Dent from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

Writing exercises for writing acquiescent characters

Here are some writing exercises you might try for learning to write acquiescent characters.

  • Write a scene where your character realizes they have been acquiescing too much and decides to take a stand, even if it's uncomfortable or risky.
  • Create a situation where your character is presented with an opportunity to take control but chooses to remain passive.
  • Write a dialogue where your character is hesitant to express their opinion, even if it's important to them.
  • Create a situation where your character has to confront someone who has been taking advantage of their acquiescent nature.
  • Describe a scenario where your character's acquiescence leads to a negative consequence, such as being taken advantage of or missing out on an opportunity.
  • Write a dialogue where your character learns to say "no" and sets boundaries with others.
  • Write a scene where your character agrees to do something they don't want to do simply to avoid conflict.
  • Write a scene where your character shows growth by learning to balance their acquiescent nature with assertiveness.
  • Describe a scenario where your character allows someone else to make a decision for them, even if it goes against their wishes.
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