If Fairness is your top strength, treating people fairly is one of your abiding principles. You do not let your personal feelings bias your decisions about other people. You give everyone a chance.
Fairness falls under the virtue category of Justice. Justice describes strengths that make life fair. They are broadly interpersonal and describe the best interaction between the individual and a group or community.
Fairness is a cognitive judgment capacity that involves reasoning and making judgments. It involves 2 types of reasoning:
Justice reasoning which emphasizes logic and weighing principles to determine moral rights and responsibilities.
Care reasoning which includes empathy and compassion; the ability to put yourself in somebody else’s shoes.
Importance of Fairness and Equality Demonstrated by… Monkeys
Treat people the way you want to be treated.
Exercises for Boosting Fairness
Self-monitor to see whether you think about or treat people of other ethnicities and cultures stereotypically.
The next time you make a mistake, self-monitor to see whether you admit it.
12 Angry Men
A Man for All Seasons
The Burmese Harp
In a Better World
Movies are an art-form highly suited for inspiring character strengths and helping in the discovery, understanding and exploration of these positive aspects in human beings. Ryan Niemiec (VIA's education director) and Danny Wedding explore 1,500 examples in their book Positive Psychology at the Movies, 2nd edition (2014). They explain that the best positive psychology movies meet the following criteria:
- Strong portrayal of a character's signature strengths which are critical to the character's identity;
- Depicts conflict/obstacles that challenge the character;
- The character uses strengths to overcome the adversity;
- The film's overall presentation is uplifting or speaks deeply to the human condition.
- The film holds great potential to generate cinematic elevation (i.e., it causes people to feel motivated to do good and increases their altruism) or cinematic admiration (i.e., it causes people to want to improve themselves and copy the model).
One World – Police
One Day – Matisyahu
Peace Train – Cat Stevens
This Land is Your Land – Woody Guthrie
Talking Bout a Revolution – Tracy Chapman