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

Character Trait: Charitable

Character Trait Charitable

To engage your reader, it's important to always show not tell the traits of your characters. The character trait Charitable is defined as the act of showing kindness, generosity, and compassion towards others by giving or sharing something valuable, such as time, money, or resources, without expecting anything in return. It is a selfless and noble quality that reflects a person's willingness to help those in need and make a positive difference in the world. Charitable individuals are often empathetic, considerate, and open-minded, and they understand the importance of giving back to their community and society as a whole.

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

Possible causes of being charitable

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

  • Personal values and beliefs that prioritize helping others and making a positive difference in the world
  • A sense of responsibility or duty to use their resources (time, money, skills) to benefit others who are less fortunate
  • Spiritual or religious beliefs that emphasize the importance of charity and compassion towards others
  • A natural inclination towards empathy and compassion, which makes them more attuned to the needs of others and more likely to want to help
  • A desire to connect with others and build relationships through acts of kindness and generosity
  • Life experiences that have taught them the importance of giving and being generous, such as growing up in a family that modeled charitable behavior or volunteering for a cause they care about

For detailed feedback on charitable characters and other aspects of your writing, try ProWritingAid's story developmental critique.

Behaviors associated with being charitable

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

  • Forgiving others and letting go of grudges
  • Being generous with compliments and positive feedback
  • Showing kindness and compassion towards others
  • Sharing resources or knowledge with those who could benefit from it
  • Supporting charitable organizations or causes
  • Acting selflessly and putting others' needs before your own
  • Volunteering time to help others
  • Donating money or resources to those in need
  • Being empathetic and understanding towards others' struggles and challenges

Attitudes associated with being charitable

You may be able to show charitable through their attitudes.

  • Generosity
  • Altruism
  • Patience
  • Tolerance
  • Forgiveness
  • Selflessness
  • Open-mindedness
  • Kindness
  • Humility
  • Empathy
  • Gratitude
  • Compassion
  • Fairness
  • Understanding

Thoughts and struggles associated with being charitable

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

  • They may struggle with the concept of charity vs. enabling, and when to provide assistance versus when to encourage independence.
  • A charitable character may struggle with balancing their desire to help others with their own needs and limitations.
  • They may feel conflicted about the deservingness of those they help and struggle with biases or assumptions about certain groups.
  • They may have difficulty saying no or setting boundaries, leading to burnout or resentment.
  • They may question the effectiveness of their actions and whether they are truly making a difference.
  • They may feel guilty or responsible for the suffering of others and take on more than they can handle.

Emotions associated with being charitable

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

  • Philanthropy
  • Compassion
  • Empathy
  • Altruism
  • Kindness
  • Selflessness
  • Humanity
  • Generosity
  • Gratitude

Facial expressions associated with being charitable

Here are some facial expressions your charitable character may exhibit.

  • A look of understanding
  • Kind eyes
  • A relaxed and open posture
  • A willingness to listen
  • A warm smile
  • A gentle nod
  • A soft, caring touch
  • A sense of generosity and giving
  • A sense of calm and inner peace

Body language associated with being charitable

Here is some body language your charitable character may exhibit.

  • Giving sincere compliments and expressing gratitude for others' contributions
  • An open and inviting posture, such as uncrossed arms and leaning forward
  • A willingness to listen actively and ask questions to understand the other person's perspective
  • A warm smile that reaches the eyes
  • A gentle touch or pat on the back or arm
  • A nod of the head to acknowledge the other person
  • Being patient and understanding, even in difficult situations
  • Offering help or support without being asked, such as holding the door or carrying a heavy load
  • Eye contact that conveys attentiveness and kindness

For detailed feedback on charitable characters and other aspects of your writing, try ProWritingAid's story developmental critique.

Behaviors associated with being charitable

Here are some behaviors your charitable character may exhibit.

  • Volunteering time to help others
  • Supporting charitable organizations or causes
  • Forgiving others and letting go of grudges
  • Donating money or resources to those in need
  • Showing kindness and compassion towards others
  • Acting selflessly and putting others' needs before your own
  • Being empathetic and understanding towards others' struggles and challenges
  • Sharing resources or knowledge with those who could benefit from it
  • Being generous with compliments and positive feedback

Growth and evolution of charitable characters

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

  • Develop a deeper understanding of the causes they support
  • Learn to set healthy boundaries and avoid burnout
  • Learn to work collaboratively with others towards a common goal
  • Learn to forgive and let go of grudges
  • Become more assertive and confident in their advocacy
  • Become a leader or mentor in their community
  • Face moral dilemmas that challenge their values
  • Discover the true meaning of giving and receiving
  • Overcome their biases and become more empathetic

Stereotypes of charitable characters to avoid

Try to avoid writing stereotypical charitable character like these examples.

  • The character who is charitable only to certain people or groups, and disregards others.
  • The "perfect" charitable character who has no flaws or struggles.
  • The character who is condescending or patronizing towards those they are trying to help.
  • The character who is charitable only for personal gain or recognition.
  • The character who is naive or ignorant about the root causes of the issues they are trying to address.
  • The character who is overly sentimental or emotional in their charitable actions.
  • The character who is so consumed by their charitable work that they neglect their own needs or relationships.

Remember that charitable characters, like all characters, should be complex and multi-dimensional. They should have strengths and weaknesses, flaws and virtues, and be motivated by a variety of factors. Avoiding these stereotypes can help you create more realistic, relatable, and interesting charitable characters.

Negatives of being charitable

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

  • Feeling guilty or obligated to give even when it may not be feasible
  • Being perceived as condescending or patronizing towards those in need
  • Ignoring personal needs or priorities in favor of helping others
  • Attracting opportunistic or manipulative individuals who take advantage of one's generosity
  • Overextending oneself financially or time-wise
  • Perpetuating systemic issues rather than addressing root causes
  • Encouraging dependency in others rather than empowering them to become self-sufficient

Positives of being charitable

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

  • Charitable acts can strengthen the bonds in a community, by promoting a sense of unity and compassion.
  • It can inspire others to follow suit and make a difference in the world.
  • It can help to alleviate guilt or anxiety about one's own privilege or good fortune.
  • It can improve one's sense of purpose and fulfillment, by contributing to a greater cause.
  • It helps others in need, making a positive impact on their lives.
  • Charitable giving can also have tax benefits, depending on the country and individual circumstances.

Verbal expressions of charitable characters

Here are some potential expressions used by charitable characters.

  • "I'd be happy to help."
  • "How can I make a difference?"
  • "I'm here to support you."
  • "Let's work together to make a positive impact."
  • "What can I do to assist you?"
  • "I want to give back to my community."
  • "It's important to me to help those in need."
  • "Let me give you a hand."
  • "I'm willing to donate my time/money/resources."

Relationships of charitable characters

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

  • Charitable people tend to be empathetic and compassionate towards others.
  • They may be more forgiving and understanding of others' mistakes or shortcomings.
  • Charitable people may have a strong desire to help others and make a positive impact on the world.
  • Charitable people can sometimes struggle with setting boundaries, as they may feel guilty saying no to someone in need.
  • They often put the needs of others before their own, which can lead to a sense of self-sacrifice.
  • They may have a strong sense of community and enjoy being part of a group or organization that works towards a common goal.

Examples from books of characters who are charitable

  • Jean Valjean from Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
  • Sydney Carton from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  • Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  • Dumbledore from Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
  • Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • Hazel Grace Lancaster from The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
  • Oskar Schindler from Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally
  • Miss Honey from Matilda by Roald Dahl
  • Samwise Gamgee from The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

Writing exercises for writing charitable characters

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

  • Write a scene where your character is forced to confront their limits as a charitable person. This could be a situation where they are unable to help someone in need, or where their actions have unintended consequences.
  • Consider the impact of your character's charitable actions on others. How do the people who benefit from their charity react, and how does it affect their relationships with others?
  • Start with defining what being charitable means to your character. What motivates them to be charitable, and what are their values and beliefs around it?
  • Create a scene where your character is faced with a situation that challenges their charitable nature. It could be a difficult decision about how to use their resources or time, or a confrontation with someone who has a different perspective on charity.
  • Experiment with different forms of charity. Your character might be involved in traditional forms of charity like donating money or volunteering at a food bank, or they might have a unique way of giving back that reflects their personality or profession.
  • Write a backstory for your character that explains their experiences with charity. Did they grow up in a family that emphasized giving back, or did they have a formative experience that shaped their values?
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