Most people like to think they are.
What does Integrity mean?
When a person has “integrity”, they have a sense of honesty, truthfulness, honour and reliability.
Here are some great traits to possess:
1. Be Honest
Everyone wants to know the truth. One hears statements like “Be honest with me”, “I want to know what is really happening” and “Tell me the truth”. Knowing the truth gives you a feeling of peace, even if you do not like what you hear. Knowing what is real, allows you to deal with it in a positive way.
While people want others to be honest, they are seldom totally honest themselves. They bend the truth, tell lies, omit facts or avoid the subject altogether. When found out, they continue to lie or cover up to protect themselves. This produces a major lack of trust.
When you lie, you eventually will be caught out and bear the consequences of doing so. The people you lie to lose trust in you or, worse still, they may choose to have nothing to do with you because of the hurt and pain that comes from deceit.
When people distrust you, it takes around 5 times of being honest before the person will begin to regain the trust.
Just as you want others to admit they are wrong, it’s important for you to admit fault. Take responsibility for making the error and finding a solution. When you are honest it takes the pressure off. Imagine trying to communicate with someone who is continually dishonest. It is frustrating and places an unwanted pressure on your relationship with them.
2. Be ReliableBeing reliable is being dependable. It is a great to have – especially in a fast-paced world where most are time-deficit.
A common relationship scenario: a wife arrives home from work and prepares a beautiful meal expecting her husband home at approximately 6:30pm. The husband decides to accept an invitation to go to the pub with his colleagues. He arrives home at 10:30pm in a cheery mood.
“Where have you been?” asks his wife in a demanding and angry tone.
“I had a few beers with some mates from work”.
“Why didn’t you let me know? I had tea ready at seven o’clock. It’s in the oven and probably ruined”.
This will now generally result in an argument or he may say nothing and she will continue to dwell on it.
Should the husband let his wife know he was going to be late?
Definitely – provided that’s what his wife wants him to do. A relationship is two people working together, involving communication, consideration, and letting each other know what is happening.
Failure to let your partner know what is happening makes them think you are unreliable. While you may think your action is not important, it may be crucial for your partner.
Are you punctual?
If you are late, do you let your partner or relevant person know?
Do you do what you say you are going to do?
When asked to do something, do you do it without someone having to check on you?
Are you always available when your partner needs your help – physically and emotionally?
“I can’t depend on you” indicates unreliability. Take time to work on this important characteristic.
3. Be Committed
A person who is honest and reliable will make a commitment.Commitment is a promise, pledge, devotion.
Relationship wise, while people often associate commitment with marriage, it is more important to commit to making your relationship a success.
You can also make commitments to children, work and health. Commitment is an ongoing process, a journey rather than a destination.
Parents often promise to do things with their children and then “forget”. Problem is, the children don’t. They soon learn not to believe what their parents promise.
Bosses often promise employees things (like a raise or bonus) and never deliver. The employee soon learns they are being used and also learn not to trust their boss.
Do what you say you are going to do.
4. Be Considerate
To be considerate means to be kind, caring, understanding and thoughtful – all important traits to possess, both as a person and in relationships.
Do you have these traits? The real test is whether your partner/staff/clients think you do.
Inconsiderate people are selfish and think only of themselves.
Adam and Sophie were having dinner at their favourite restaurant. After eating his entrée, Adam left to speak with some friends at another table. Sophie thought he would only be a couple of minutes. Twenty minutes later Adam returned to be greeted by a hostile Sophie. Adam could not understand her anger as he was happy for her to leave him to speak with others.
Here, consideration and communication play a part. While Adam assumed that it was alright with Sophie, he was wrong. Adam should have established this first. He should have asked Sophie if this met with her approval. He could also have asked Sophie if she would like to meet his friends.
The more Adam is aware of Sophie’s feelings, the more his decisions will suit them both. If Adam knows Sophie is not happy to meet his friends or sit alone, he needs to be considerate and ensure his conversation to his friends is brief.
If Sophie is unhappy with what Adam suggests, they should negotiate a solution. Perhaps Adam could have asked his friends to their table or perhaps seen them at Sophie’s convenience.