Monday, February 25, 2013

Don’t Ever Underestimate the Value of Integrity

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When describing morality, the word integrity is derived from the Latin word “Integritas” meaning completeness or soundness.

Integrity is an inner quality reflecting our behavior, reliability, or consistency in our actions according to our values and principles. Integrity can also refer to honesty when we associate it with ethics.  Either way, having integrity means we lack inner conflict and our actions consistent with what we believe. In my opinion, integrity is a personal attribute that defines us, and yes a virtue.

We hear people say, “Integrity is what you do, or say, when no one is looking.” This is true but I guarantee you people are looking! Us humans are far more transparent than we would like to think.

The world thrives on news of corruption and those who have fallen from grace. It appears one of the most valuable of human virtues has little to no value in our society. We cannot present ourselves as having integrity if our actions are completely inconsistent. To possess inner completeness or soundness, we need to “know our inner-self” and that means also holding ourselves accountable for our own authenticity.

If we do not value our own integrity, the bad news is, the alternative is hypocrisy. People are not fools and very intuitive. If we are not genuine in our motives and actions, the flipside is dishonor and lack of respect. It is simple, hypocrisy reflects deception, a fraud, a masquerade.  Who wants to be viewed as an imposter? One can reflect lack of integrity in friendships, intimate relationships, and business dealings - sadly, if integrity lacks in either, it will lack in all.

With everything, there is cause and effect. We only have one life. Once exposed as insincere or dishonest, integrity then becomes elusive, even if you think you are the only one looking. ~ Kym L. Pasqualini