“Look for three things in a person – intelligence, energy and integrity. If they don’t have the last one, don’t even bother with the first two.” – Warren Buffet
Integrity is defined by Wikipedia as “the practice of being honest and showing a consistent and uncompromising adherence to strong moral and ethical principles and values. In ethics, integrity is regarded as the honesty and truthfulness or accuracy of one’s actions.”
If you observe many people in the world we live in today, you will notice that integrity is often lacking. Being in power or in control, having money and material belongings are what people want to be known for. It has become the purpose of many’s life. This is seen as more important than being respected and admired for one’s integrity – which I believe should be part of life’s purpose in order to enable you to make a difference.
How we model integrity has to be consistent. We need to be honourable, compassionate and understanding. Our morals and values come through in our daily interactions with everyone whether we are at home or at work. There are many ways displaying integrity at home overlaps with the work environment. Below are just a few things we could all do or do more of to show integrity:
- Keeping our word: when we say we will do something, we should follow through and do it.
- Say no when we really cannot or even don’t want to do something – we always need to be honest and say what we mean.
- Show commitment: when starting something, we need to see it through to the end.
- Not respond with aggression or violence when we are upset, angry and hurt.
- Not disobey rules or the law no matter how insignificant they may seem – this includes talking on mobile phones or texting while driving or going through a red traffic light.
- Think before we respond or act in a way that might hurt someone else’s feelings. Especially when we attack people from behind a screen in our world of social media.
- Pay attention and listen when someone speaks and show them that you are truly present.
- Not take credit for someone else’s work.
- Be on time for work, appointments, meetings and for your children.
- Be empathetic when communicating with people, taking the time to understand where they are coming from and what they may be feeling.
- Do not delight in the failure or misfortune of others, no matter how much they may have hurt you.
The above are just a few things that I believe demonstrate you have integrity. Not only are these things so easy to do but they foster an open, positive and caring environment. They show respect and build trust. To have meaningful and loyal relationships, we need to have integrity.
We are not perfect beings though and will at times display poor judgement. It should, however, be an exception. So that people who we interact with regularly, immediately know when our behaviour is out of character. Always aim to lead by example in every capacity. Be mindful and protect your integrity. Remember to stay true to you and always do what you believe is right.
“Carefully watch your thoughts, for they become your words. Manage and watch your words, for they will become your actions. Consider and judge your actions, for they have become your habits. Acknowledge and watch your habits, for they become your destiny.” – Mahatma Gandhi
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Until next time…