According to the dictionary, integrity is the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles. Having integrity means following these principles and doing the right thing in all circumstances, even if no one is watching you. It means you are true to yourself.
Integrity is your decision to have a set of values and morals, and to live by them every day. This practice is what forms your personality and your character. If you consistently do the honest things in your life, you will be developing integrity. This, it can be argued, it the most important quality you can hope to develop.
The reputation of a thousand years may be determined by the conduct of one hour.Japanese Proverb
If you have integrity, chances are you have a happy and successful life. It means being totally honest to yourself and others. This is not easy. It is hardest to be honest with ourselves. We need to consistently be true to the person we want to become. We need to commit to becoming the best person possible.
Ways we can develop integrity:
- Show respect of other people
- Be on time for appointments
- Be aware of other people’s feelings
- Be proactive in completing tasks on time
- Be aware of your words and the effect they have on others
Integrity can be thought of as the honesty, accuracy, and truthfulness of your thoughts and actions. It is the opposite of being a hypocrite. The word is derived from the Latin adjective integer meaning whole or complete. Only you can define what values you consider important in your life. Take time and make a list of your core values. These are values that are so important to you that you refuse to compromise on them.
The supreme quality for leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office.Dwight D. Eisenhower
We are faced with situations daily where our integrity is put to the test. We may find ourselves being put in a tough situation by a boss who wants us to omit important information to a client, or outright lie. As a parent we may be faced with times when we need to apologize to our children for acting in a way that we are ashamed of. Always ask yourself, “How will I feel later if I do or say that?”
People with true integrity tend to have the following traits:
The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively.Bob Marley
Like most important things in our lives, this is a life-long process. We will make mistakes and need to ask forgiveness from friends, co-workers, and family. That is ok. In the asking forgiveness and taking responsibility for our words and actions, we are showing our integrity to others. The more you stretch beyond yourself, the more you grow.