What’s the key to living an authentic life that honours your most important priorities? Living with integrity.
Integrity is a good foundation on which to build our lives. Living with integrity means honouring the morals and standards that we set for ourselves. For example, if you have a standard that says ‘I always tell the truth’, then you should be honest with your boss when he or she asks you to take on extra work when you do not think you’ll have the time to do it. Or if you have to tell clients when there will be a delay in the work that your firm is doing for them, then instead of making up an excuse, you should tell the truth.
Living with integrity entails having strength of character. When we neglect to honour our standards by going against the rules we set for ourselves, our life becomes confusing. When this happens, we have a hard time gaining insight, and as a result, life starts to break down. Plans might fall through. We may attract people who drive us crazy. Doors seem to keep closing regardless of how hard we work.
Because we are unique individuals, we each have different standards by which we live. No one standard is better than another. The important thing is to know your standards for living and to honour them, so you can create more flow in your life.
The way to live with integrity is to notice when you are not honouring your standards and do something about it. For example, if you are working for an organisation that suddenly requires you to work nights and weekends, and you have a standard that says that it is important to spend time with your family, you may need to make a different arrangement or look for another job.
Let’s consider some additional examples of living with integrity:
- If you have decided that you would like to work with people who make you happy, then you’ll need to reconsider your job if colleagues get you down.
- If you have decided that you will not engage in gossip at work about others, then you should tell your colleague that you do not want to get involved when he or she starts talking about someone’s problems.
- If, as a team leader, you have taken on responsibility for what your colleagues do at work, you may need to step in and resolve a problem immediately without blaming others.
The key to tuning into the flow and creating an authentic life is to be sure that you are living with integrity.