As we have seen, Rascals are different; not only from the crowd, but even from each other. They are individually individualistic. Some are more "Rascally" than others.
Taking the Test of Rascalinity will let you know what level Rascal you are, where your strengths lie, and in what areas you can be working toward improvement. Also, as you grow into more of a Rascal over time, the Test of Rascalinity will help you measure progress and keep yourself on track.
Testing for Rascalinity
Observing one's behavior is the surest test of a Rascal's authenticity. Seeing a person in pressure situations, in moments where courage is required, where complacency is rampant, where freedom is under attack, is where a Rascal shows his mettle. The following test is designed to simulate actual observations of behavior. Since you, the reader, are present during every one of your own behaviors, you are the most convenient person to answer the questions presented here. Still, we are biased toward ourselves and can easily be too complimentary or too hard on ourselves. Therefore, others that you trust can also take this test with you in mind, giving interesting insight and feedback from the perspective of on outsider. This is usually helpful in identifying blind spots: those things about ourselves that are clear to others but we don't see. Also, this test is subjective and therefore not infallible, but it will provide a general range of your Rascalinity. After the test, we will review the ways in which a Rascal can increase his score.
For each of the following Rascalinity Test statements, simply answer with a 1,2,3,4, or 5, according to the following scale:
1 = not me at all
2 = rarely me
3 = true about half the time
4 = usually me
5 = totally me
For convenience, there is a Rascalinity Test worksheet provided at the end of the test. Feel free to copy it and print it out to assist you in compiling your score. Additional worksheets are also available in the RASCAL book.
- I put off the good I could have today for the great I can achieve tomorrow.
- I have always felt, deep down, that I was made for something great.
- I always do what is right, even if it costs me.
- People are often telling me to take it easy because I work so hard.
- I get very angry when I see an innocent person being taken advantage of.
- I can point to several key moments of peak inspiration in my life.
- I have fallen in love with learning and I can't get enough.
- I know the edges of my comfort zone and I push through them often.
- I don't pout or hold grudges. I get the issue out on the table so it can be fixed.
- I can hang in there through tough times without complaint.
- I have been told that I am different.
- I am a sunny person.
- I am not quick to believe what I hear on TV and in the news.
- I have a clear vision of what I want my future to be like.
- I get excited when I think about the possibility of making a difference with what I do.
- My conscience really convicts me if I do something I know to be wrong.
- I am a very driven person.
- I have a very strong sense of "fair" and "unfair."
- My friends would say that I am passionate.
- I read good, life-enhancing books on a regular basis.
- My friends would say that I am courageous.
- I am a very loving person.
- There are some massive struggles that have come my way and I am proud of how I made it through them.
- Nowadays, I would probably be diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder.
- I have a very positive attitude.
- I am great at reading between the lines of what people say and do.
- I have strong focus on the task at hand.
- I live by the verse, "To whom much is given much is required."
- People would say that I have character.
- I believe that perfect practice makes perfect, and I live it.
- I cry for the suffering of other people.
- I have no trouble motivating myself.
- People would say that I am a student of success.
- I never chicken out.
- I try to discover the unique characteristics of my friends, so I can serve them better.
- People would say that I am very persistent.
- I love to come up with new ideas.
- I am not one to sink into a "pity party."
- I can walk into a room and immediately ascertain the mood of the group.
- I set priorities and stick to them.
- I wake up in the morning thinking about my purpose and cause.
- If given extra change, I always return the money.
- My parents, teachers, coaches and friends would say I am a hard worker.
- I am very thankful for my freedom and think about if often.
- Though I sometimes have doubts, I kill them quickly.
- Some of my discretionary income always goes to self-development and educational materials.
- I hate to let things fester.
- Most people would say that I am fun to be around.
- I never quit.
- I am very creative.
- I am quick to find the silver lining in all things.
- I am always willing to consider both sides of any issue.
- I am able to maintain a long term focus if I'm engaged in a worthwhile goal.
- I definitely have a big dream for which I am willing to fight.
- To cheat a little is the same as cheating a lot.
- I have formed at least one, major productive habit in the last year.
- I don't like it when people are divided up into groups for political purposes.
- I do not have a problem with complacency. I am striving for more and better all the time.
- I consistently feel I have a lot to learn.
- When there is a problem in my life, I hit it head on.
- I have learned to give a sincere apology when I am wrong.
- When I make a commitment to someone, I stick with them through thick and thin.
- My self-esteem is strong, because I know God made me for a purpose.
- No one would say that I am a whiner or complainer.
- I am usually interested in at least finding out the contrarian view on an issue.
- I use visualization techniques to try and see my future more clearly.
- I have done many selfless acts and kept them between just God and me.
- I believe there is "right" and there is "wrong."
- I can still remember when I learned that I could get good at something if I tried hard enough.
- I am very concerned about the loss of freedom in our society.
- I know what it means to be "In the Zone", because I have often experienced it myself.
- I hate being ignorant about a subject.
- I have had my full share of critics in my life.
- I have friends with whom I've been close for a long time.
- I may get knocked down, but I always get up again.
- Most of the sports or activities I have enjoyed are individual ones.
- With me, the glass is always half full.
- I don't usually fall for practical jokes.
- I don't see things as they are, but rather as they could be.
- I am more interested in who I become than the things I can accumulate.
- People know if they tell me something in confidence, I will keep it secret.
- The harder I work, the luckier I get.
- I hate that the world is not fair.
- I am not one to over-analyze.
- I have a spiritual mentor.
- I can name five significant times I forced myself to overcome a fear.
- People know they can count on me.
- My life demonstrates that almost anything worthwhile requires a long term commitment.
- I march to the beat of my own drum.
- My friends would say that I am a always smiling.
- I am always interested in finding the deeper level of understanding on an issue.
- I have it pretty clear in mind where I want to be 10 years from now.
- I am able to do what I am supposed to do even when I don't feel like it.
- I would never snoop through someone else's private things.
- I am good at breaking bad habits.
- Each individual, each person, each life, matters.
- Inaction is not one of my problems.
- When I am interested in a subject, I can't learn enough about it.
- One thing I know about myself is that I am not a coward.
- The people that know me best would say that I am extremely loyal.
- It takes a lot to discourage me.
- I'm not very susceptible to the opinions of other people.
- When a problem occurs, I am the one everyone looks to for a positive attitude about it.
- I am good at making decisions.
- I have goals that are written down.
- I want to be a force for good in this world.
- I have lost friends, because I refused to compromise my principles.
- My days are disciplined.
- I am committed to fight for justice.
- I build the drama in my mind for the accomplishment of my goals.
- I have a very curious nature.
- I would rather go down in flames than cave in on what I feel is right.
- I put a high priority on my friendships.
- Once I have committed to something, there is no stopping me.
- People who know me well would say that I am a brand all my own.
- I know that no matter what happens to me, I can recover from it.
- I have always had a great sense of timing.
- I have no problem delaying gratification, waiting until later to buy something or do something once I've earned it.
- Most people would call me a servant leader.
- I hold being honorable as one of my most important attributes.
- Hard work is a lot of fun.
- I do not blame others for my problems.
- I am inspired to know that my efforts impact the larger picture, and it drives me.
- I always feel that there is never enough time to read.
- Confronting brutal reality is not a problem for me.
- I am always buying gifts, sending cards, sending texts, or reaching out to my buddies in some way.
- It takes a lot to hurt my feelings.
- I like to do things my own special way.
- I am not a worrier.
- I know that things are rarely what they seem.
Level of Rascalinity
This part of the test is rather easy and straight forward. In fact, being a Rascal, you have probably already added up the score of each column and then arrived at a grand total. And you have also probably looked below to the scale indicating your overall level of Rascalinity! Since we know you are going to rush ahead and do it anyway, let's look at those levels now.
Grand Total Level of Rascalinity
0 to 192 Rascal Wanna-Be, but don't give up hope
193 to 355 Rookie Rascal, keep learning and growing
356 to 486 Mid-Pack Rascal, glad to have you with us
487 to 584 Leading Rascal, you're incredible
585 to 650 Legendary Rascal, the elite of the elite
Understanding Your Score
Now that you know your Level of Rascalinity you can use it as a yard stick with which to measure your future progress as you grow into even more of a Rascal. After all, don't we all want to become more Rascally, become better, and make a bigger contribution?
Assuming that the answer for you is "yes," there is more that can be learned from your score to help you on your journey. Having a grand total and a corresponding label for your present level is good. Understanding how to capitalize on it will take you to the next level.
First, let's consider two ways of looking at strengths and weaknesses. There are those who will tell you to ignore your weaknesses and focus on your strengths, allowing your weaknesses to die from starvation. Others will tell you success is all about fixing your problems so they no longer hold you back. As with most things in life, the truth is a mix of the two viewpoints.
Certainly we don't want to over-fixate on our problems. Doing so causes us to pull our focus away from the areas where we are naturally endowed, depletes our confidence, and drains our motivation. However, if the weaknesses are large enough, they can smother any chance the strengths have of moving us forward. In particular, if our weaknesses are weaknesses of character, they must be addressed immediately or the kind of success and significance for which a Rascal longs will never be realized. For some people, their weaknesses are so prevalent that they must be fixed in order to succeed any further. This is why it is helpful to have someone else take the test on your behalf. It might just point out some blind spots for which you are not aware. However, do this carefully, and only with people for whom you have the highest trust and respect. We should always invite "constructive" criticism carefully, as it is still criticism, and no matter how much of a Rascal we are, we can only handle so much of it.
If you do have others take the test with you in mind, then you might want to average their score for you with the one you came up with for yourself. Or, if there are any areas where they strongly differ from your own assessments, apply those to what we will discuss next and use that to identify key areas on which to work, but also, areas where it appears you are the strongest.
The columns on the worksheet you completed represent categories of Rascalinity. This is not an exact science, of course, as many of the questions could apply to more than one category. However, they are purposefully arranged to emphasize the main thrust for each statement in the test. With that said, let's first determine where your strengths lie.
Here’s the key to the columns and their represented categories:
A: Vision/Focus/Delayed Gratification
D: Work Ethic/Mastery/Habits
G: Hunger to Learn
The totaled score of each column represents the comparative strength. The higher the score, the stronger you are in that category. In the spaces below, write the three categories in which you received the highest total score.
Biggest Strength Category ________________________________
Second Biggest Strength Category _________________________
Third Biggest Strength Category ___________________________
There is something very empowering about receiving clear feedback on our strengths and then writing them down. Allow this to encourage you and embolden you on your path to greater Rascalinity.
Next we will consider weaknesses. We will use the same method and worksheet as we did to determine strengths. This time, however, look at the columns or categories with the lowest totals. Record the two lowest categories below.
Biggest Area for Improvement ______________________________
Second Biggest Area for Improvement ________________________
Notice we are not calling these weaknesses now but rather “areas for improvement.” This is because they aren't weaknesses if you address them. Rascals are committed to growing personally and maximizing their potential, therefore weaknesses, if addressed head-on, do not remain so. They become areas of personal growth.
Do not become demoralized when looking at these categories. Remember, none of us is perfect and if we take this test and end up with no areas for improvement, we are either very far along on the journey to Rascalinity, or we have an overblown image of ourselves and weren't being accurate when taking the test.
The first thing to do with this information is to determine the magnitude of the two areas for improvement you've identified. The most serious are those involving Character and Honor. If this is one of your categories for improvement, as I said before, it must be addressed immediately. Perhaps the second most critical area for improvement to address is Courage. It is almost impossible to fully develop Character and Honor if courage is lacking. Again, hit this one head on and with no delay. The remaining categories are also important, but are not as foundational as Character/Honor and Courage. Determine the magnitude of weakness in each of your areas for improvement. For instance, were there a lot of 1's or 2's for each of these two categories or just a couple? Did other people agree when they took this test on your behalf? Remember, we don't want to focus too much on our weaknesses, but they do need to be shored up as much as possible without distracting us from our strengths.
When it comes to growing our strengths, this is normally easy and fun. After all, it aligns with our most natural abilities and affinities anyway. The key concept to understand is that you will succeed the biggest, make the largest impact, and create the most significant legacy if you find a way to live within the categories of your biggest strengths. This is easy to forget, as the world, other people, and responsibilities love to pull us in conflicting directions. Rascals, however, know to stay firmly rooted in their areas of strength. They take what they've been given and maximize it to their full potential.
So How Does a Rascal Grow in Rascalinity?
Rascals realize they can grow in their Rascalinity, becoming more effective and significant, experiencing greater degrees of freedom and empowerment in their lives. There are many action steps that can grow a Rascal's character and make his life more fulfilling and intentional. Below are several:
1. Think about your life's purpose, and write down your thoughts.
2. Ponder and obtain answers for life's eternal questions, understanding your spiritual life and your standing before your Creator.
3. Identify causes that make you come alive and for which you would sacrifice.
4. Determine how you can serve the people in your life.
5. Clearly define the biggest dreams you have for your life, and write them down.
6. Set clear goals in the pursuit of your dreams, and put deadlines on their accomplishment.
7. Become a life-long learner, making the reading of good books and the Scriptures a habit (see the categorized Recommended Reading List at the back of this book).
8. Find a mentor to keep you accountable and on track.
9. Take steps daily to build relationships and expand your network of allies and contacts, associating regularly with other Rascals.
10. Schedule time for restoration and renewal.
11. Write down your life's priorities and review them often.
12. Periodically take the Test of Rascalinity to track your progress.
13. Take action NOW!
Growing as a person is what being a Rascal is all about. Without a heart change, without getting our eternal questions in order and understanding the bigger picture of our world and how we fit into it, we will never maximize and fulfill our true potential. In fact, we will never truly live. A Rascal intentionally emphasizes his strengths and assassinates his weaknesses so that he can maximize his contribution. It is not easy, but Rascals are not interested in ease. They do what needs to be done in order to maximize their impact as a force for good and live a life that counts. Growing means that even though they may not have everything it takes today, Rascals can come back tomorrow a little stronger and a little better.