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It’s All About Integrity

“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.” – Sir John Lubbock 

 When we experience harmony and balance in our lives – at work, at home, at play and in relationship – it’s most often because there is a conscious alignment between what we think, feel, say and do. We are in integrity. Our life choices and decisions have a “felt-sense” of being true, honest and sincere. We have a “knowing” that our thinking, feeling, being, having and doing come from a place that is honest, sincere and self-responsible.

When we lack congruity between what we think, feel, say and do, we often experience a mental, emotional, spiritual and, sometimes, a physical sense (think of an upside-down isosceles triangle teetering on it’s tip, not on its flat base) of imbalance, disconnect, disorientation or dizziness. How could we not?

The ground of our being, the foundation of who we are, and how we are, is built on the degree of honesty in our expression – our thoughts, feelings, speech and actions. This foundation can begin to deteriorate when integrity – the concrete of the foundation – contains too much water, or too little sand or unwanted impurities. The result is our living life feeling confused, unsure, powerless – often feeling like a fake or phony.

“Honor your integrity and you will be repaid many times over with increased prosperity.”  – Sanaya Roman and Duane Packer 

The way we honor our integrity is to first be clear and conscious of the values that matter most – our core values – those that reside in our heart. Secondly, we are in integrity when we live these values – holding them, speaking them and being them.

“The first and worst of all frauds is to cheat one’s self.” – Phillip James Bailey 

When we lack alignment or congruence between what we think, feel, say or do, most often we are living a life of self-deception – hiding from our True, Real and Authentic Self. We are a fraud. We spend much of our life telling ourselves, and others, “stories.” We rationalize, justify and argue in feeble attempts to be comfortable with our deception, our excuses, our “faux” self. 

When we scan various areas of our life – career and livelihood, personal environment and organization, health and wellness, abundance and finances, play and recreation, intimacy and partnership, friends and family, and spiritual and personal growth – where are we in integrity and where are we out of integrity? Where are we forthright and honest and where are we dishonest, deceptive and cheating – our self and others? Where are we true to our word, our trustworthiness, our commitments and promises? Where are we taking a “left turn” or “cutting corners?”

Staying With The Energy of Integrity
When we are in integrity, we experience an energy, the “felt-sense” of “right knowing,” “right understanding” and “right action.” We experience a sense a strength, courage, steadfastness, discipline, inspiration, intuitiveness and will that arises from deep within. We are able to ward off thoughts, beliefs, assumptions, premises, “stories” and impulses that would otherwise knock us off our game. 

The way we stay in integrity is by being consciously conscious – continually, throughout our day, asking, “What am I doing right here and right now, and why?” We’re consistently looking at our motives? Am I angry, afraid, fearful, resentful, jealous, overwhelmed, sad, confused, etc? Am I feeling connected with others. Am I being selfish?

The question leads to motives. Motives come from values. So, an opportunity to explore what’s going on with me in this moment, and this moment, and this moment…and, why. This practice is a wonderful way to become more conscious of our fundamental motives and whether our motives truly serve us well and support our being in integrity. 

Integrity – The Planetary Connection
“The great thing in the world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes 

The core value of integrity is Purpose-related. Purpose points to why we’re on the planet. Many folks, if they’re being honest, will admit much of their activity lacks Purpose. When we lack Purpose, there’s no “center that holds.” Many folks can tell you what they’re doing in various life areas, but are hard-pressed to tell you why – they often lack a deeper, heart-driven intentionality or motives. Without Purpose-driven core values informing our thinking, feeling, speaking and action, we’re more than not experiencing imbalance and dis-harmony in our life – an experience that keeps us from being in integrity.

Character is most determined by integrity. Character is how we are when no one is watching. When we are out of integrity, we are dishonest and our dishonesty becomes the thread that runs through our dealing and associations – at work, at home, at play and in relationship. It’s hard for us to be trusted when we’re out of integrity.

So, when you turn off the lights tonight and tuck yourself in, are you (have you been) at peace and in integrity with yourself?

Some questions for self-reflection:

  • Are there choices and decisions you need to make that could take you out of integrity? How so? Do you make them anyway? Why?
  • Do you use the same definition to define integrity for yourself as you do for others? If not, why not? Do you consistently walk your talk? Would others – at work, at home and at play and in your relationship – agree with you?
  • Do your life choices and decisions support you to hold yourself in high regard?  How so?
  • Do you feel integrity is a robe you can put on and take off when convenient? How do you justify that perspective?
  • Who or what stops you from acting in integrity? How so?
  • When you’re not acting with integrity, what kind of self-talk do you engage in?  What kinds of feelings do you experience?
  • Do your needs for control, recognition and security stop you from acting with integrity?  How so?
  • Does it matter if you’re not acting with integrity? 
  • Do you ever excuse, justify or rationalize acting without integrity? If so, when and why? 
  • On an integrity scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high), how would you rate yourself when it comes to the following behaviors: gossiping, bullying, viewing or downloading porn, stealing physical materials, stealing intellectual property, stealing time, telling the truth, making excuses, being direct, open and honest in your communications, respecting others, obeying rules and regulations, and being faithful? 
  • What was your experience around honesty and integrity like when you were growing up?

(c) 2022, Peter G. Vajda, Ph.D. and True North Partnering. All rights in all media reserved.

I’m grateful for the opportunity to share this reading with you and I hope you find it insightful and useful.
Perhaps you’ll share this with others, post it on a bulletin board, and use it to generate rich and rewarding discussion.

What is the one thing that is keeping you from feeling successful, happy, confident, in control or at peace as you live your life – at work, at home, at play or in relationship? Maybe you know what that “thing” is…maybe you don’t. You just have a feeling that something has to change, whether or not you embrace that change. And how would that change support you to show up as a “better you?”

I’m available to guide you to create relationships that reflect honesty, integrity, authenticity, trust, and respect whether at work or outside of work. I support you to focus on the interpersonal skills that enable you to relate to others with a high level of personal and professional satisfaction – unhampered by personal inconsistencies, beliefs, “stories,” and behaviors that create barriers to a harmonious, pleasant, conscious, compatible, healthy and productive relationship.