Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. It’s an all too familiar phrase. It has since become synonymous with the idea that power is a test of character. This power could be influence, as in fame or the limelight, or authority, as in positions of power.

As if power is the crucible in which we forge our character. All evidence to the contrary. Power is the canvass on which we showcase the character we have already cultivated. It is the artistic expression of our innermost being. It proclaims our driving forces, motivators in our decisions and poise with which we address conflict and pressure.

It is the loudspeaker that plays the song of our life values, and how much value they really have.

Power is something we would do well to prepare for. “Some are born great, others have greatness thrust upon them.” When you are thrust upon by this greatness, you will buckle under the pressure if unprepared. It takes time and intentional development of character to absorb power in a healthy way.

Perhaps we should spend less time in awe of those in power, and more time developing healthy mechanisms for them to increase their capacity to deal with it.

Hollywood is full of examples of greatness thrust upon those who were ill prepared and without support. Character is developed in private and showcased in public. Too often, we do not know the weight our character would have to bear.

Foundations crack when you build skyscrapers on townhouses.

Samantha Sophia

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